Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Arrow Films Puts Donnie Darko Back in Cinemas to Celebrate its 15th Anniversary


Hello Folks,
Jonny T here with news that Arrow Films are putting the cult classic Donnie Darko back in cinemas to celebrate it's 15th Anniversary. I remember all the hype at the time but it didn't work for me but wow 15 years already??? I may well give it another shot, I remember seeing The Shining and thinking it was shite but rewatched at MAYHEM and it blew me away, So i will be revisiting Donnie Darko and reviewing the release,
Jonny T.


ARROW FILMS PUTS DONNIE DARKO BACK IN CINEMAS TO CELEBRATE ITS 
15TH ANNIVERSARY

Monday 31st October 2016 – Arrow Films is thrilled to announce that it will release the all-time indie cult classic DONNIE DARKO (2001) into UK cinemas to celebrate its 15th Anniversary with a 4K Restoration. The original theatrical version will have an exclusive run at the BFI from the 16th December followed by a nationwide release from the 23rd December 2016. The Director’s Cut, which has been newly remastered, will also be available for screenings. The release also coincides with the 25th Anniversary of film distributor Arrow Films.

Fifteen years before Stranger Things combined science-fiction, Spielberg-ian touches and 80s nostalgia to much acclaim, Writer/Director Richard Kelly set the template and the high-water mark with his debut feature, Donnie Darko. Initially beset with distribution problems, it would slowly find its audience and emerge as arguably the first cult classic of the new millennium. 

Donnie is a troubled high school student: in therapy, prone to sleepwalking and in possession of an imaginary friend, a six-foot rabbit named Frank, who tells him the world is going to end in 28 days 06 hours 42 minutes and 12 seconds. During that time he will navigate teenage life, narrowly avoid death in the form of a falling jet engine, follow Frank s maladjusted instructions and try to maintain the space-time continuum. 

Described by its director as The Catcher in the Rye as told by Philip K. Dick, Donnie Darko combines an eye-catching, eclectic cast pre-stardom Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal, heartthrob Patrick Swayze, former child star Drew Barrymore, Oscar nominees Mary McDonnell and Katharine Ross, and television favourite Noah Wyle and an evocative soundtrack of 80s classics by Echo and the Bunnymen, Tears for Fears and Duran Duran. This brand-new 4K restoration, carried out exclusively for this release by Arrow Films, allows a modern classic to finally receive the treatment it deserves. 




Thursday, 20 October 2016

The Eyes Of My Mother - Reviewed.


"A young, lonely woman is consumed by her deepest and darkest desires after tragedy strikes her quiet country life."

Recently rated 1/5 in The Guardian I really can't see why they scored it so low and could rant about that but i'm not going to because I loved it and reading online so did a hell f a lot of other people. Now i'll tell you my thoughts on The Eyes Of  My Mother.



Filmed entirely in black and white,  The Directorial debut from Nicolas Pesce who also wrote the screenplay is The Eyes Of My Mother  and it is a solid debut.
Set in 3 chapters Mother, Father and Family the film opens up with a Mother and her young daughter Francisca on a remote farm. the mother is teaching the child some principles of farming and life when a stranger approaches and asks to use the bathroom, Obviously the mother refuses but he then pulls a gun and insists that she show him where it is, He tells Francisca to sit on a stool and keep quiet, The Father returns from work and finds a pretty grim scene, This sets the movie up for the next section ,Father.
We advance a few years to see Francesca older and somewhat more twisted and lonelier.Now i don't really want to go into too many plot points as it would definitely spoil some great parts. Its in English sometimes and subtitled other times which does add to its slight weirdness, As i mentioned earlier entirely in black and white and that adds load the atmosphere and great desolate locations.
Similar i suppose you could say in tone to Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Deranged but not as direct and in your face as those movies.Its more art house than slaughterhouse. You never really get to find out a lot of the back story but the signs and clues are there of what may have gone off in the past so rather than bombarding you with back stories you get to see what is happening now and deal with it.


Due for release in December this year and hopefully UK release early next year. It's definitely not every ones cup of tea. In saying that i would recommend this with out hesitation.  Keep your eyes out for a release near you and if i have any more news on it i'll be sure to let you know.
For me a definite must watch,
8/10
Jonny T.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Takeshi Kitano's KIDS RETURN coming to blu-ray



Is pleased to announce the Blu-Ray release of

Takeshi Kitano's

KIDS RETURN

Featuring a new 2K remaster from Office Kitano!

The first 1000 copies feature a limited cardboard slipcase with new illustrated artwork by Marie Bergeron

Out on bluray October 24th

Featuring a new audio commentary by film scholar Aaron Gerow and a Making Of




Synopsis

Takeshi Kitano’s sixth film, Kids Return, is a cinematic tale about Shinji (Masanobu Ando) and Masaru (Ken Kaneko), two high-school dropouts, growing up in a Tokyo suburb. Shinji and Masaru are playful, self-centred and irresponsible. They wag school, ridicule their teachers and bully other students, and spend most of their time at the local coffee house and noodle shop. Shinji pursues an amateur boxing career, but does not have the strength or determination to succeed amidst the cutthroat competition. Masaru joins a yakuza gang, quickly rising in the ranks of the local mob, but due to his lack of discipline, he too soon loses his position. Three years later, Shinji and Masaru meet again and return to their old school.



Takeshi Kitano  - Biography

The success of HANA-BI has confirmed Takeshi Kitano as a leading figure of international cinema. Among its numerous awards, HANA-BI won the Golden Lion at the 1997 Venice Film Festival and was named Best Non-European Film at the 1997 European Film Academy Awards. HANA-BI was cited on numerous “Best Films of the Year” lists, often in the premiere position.

Whether as director, actor, writer, artist, TV personality or stand-up comic, Takeshi Kitano has not simply sought out to challenge his audiences. He has always sought out challenges for himself.

With 1989’s VIOLENT COP, Kitano made his directorial debut unexpectedly. When the scheduled director dropped out, Kitano, the project’s leading actor, was signed on for replacement. Without previous directorial experience, Kitano revised the script entirely and imposed a sharp and ironic style, later acclaimed for its maturity and its sense of space and framing.

VIOLENT COP, and other Kitano-helmed films such as BOILING POINT (1990) and SONATINE (1993), centered around yakuza gangster characters. Although they became international cult favorites, they also branded the director-writer with a burdensome trademark for graphic violence and Kitano cool. In retaliation with A SCENE AT THE SEA (1991), GETTING ANY? (1995) and KIDS RETURN (1996), however, Kitano earned praise for his daring changes in directorial style and subject.



With A SCENE AT THE SEA, Kitano’s on-screen presence was absent, as well as the violence which had highlighted his first two films. The poignant story of a deaf adolescent and his passion for surfing showed other facets of Kitano’s talent -- a discreet emotional sense and a tender point of view toward young people, innocence and marginal existence. A SCENE AT THE SEA also marked the debut of what was to become a longtime collaboration with musician-composer Joe Hisaishi, whose haunting melodies  perfectly complement the filmmaker’s universe.

GETTING ANY? served as an absolute about-face to SONATINE, which brought Kitano significant  international attention after its presentation at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival (A Certain Regard). In GETTING ANY?, Kitano, for the first time, tried to integrate into a feature film the sense of absurdity and satiric delirium representative of his comedic
TV personality. The result was a screamingly funny and mocking vision of the auto-destruction and obsessions of Japanese society.

In KIDS RETURN (1996), his sixth film, Kitano transposed his own adolescence to contemporary Tokyo for a touching look at two young men torn between boxing and underworld crime. The film was his first after a long convalescence from a near-fatal motorcycle accident in August 1994. KIDS RETURN, produced by Office Kitano (the company founded by the director and long-time producer Masayuki Mori) without any studio backing, was presented by the Directors’ Fortnight at the 1996 Cannes Film Festival.

As a performer, Kitano is perhaps better known as “Beat Takeshi,” a stage name he received in the mid-1970s as part of the manzai comedy duo “The Two Beats.” (Kitano paid tribute to those comedy club debuts in KIDS RETURN. Also, in KIKUJIRO, Beat Takeshi is reunited with the second beat, Beat Kiyoshi, who plays a man harassed by the character of Kikujiro at an abandoned bus stop.) As a stand-up comic, Kitano’s routine was simultaneously unprecedented manzai: rapid-fire delivery and deft comments that punctured the spectator’s sensibility.

In 1980, “Beat Takeshi” began his evolution into a television personality. Regardless of the program content, he discreetly imposed his mix of satiric commentary on current events and more direct forms of absurdity. From scientific programs to late night shows dominated by sex and zany comedy, his rise culminated in the participation of nine different shows per week. By the early 1980s, the comic and insolent provocator “Beat Takeshi”  had become a national star.

After a few comic cameos in Japanese feature films in the early 1980s, Kitano won international attention for his role as the brutal, yet sentimental, Sergeant Hara in Nagisa Oshima’s MERRY CHRISTMAS, MR. LAWRENCE (1983). His other non-self- directed feature credits include Robert Longo’s JOHNNY MNEMONIC (1995), Takashi Ishii’s FIVE OF THEM (1995) and Toshihiro Tenma’s MANY HAPPY RETURNS (1993). During the mid-80s, Kitano starred in the successful made-for-TV feature film OKUBO KIYOSHI NO HANZAI, which prefigured the cops and yakuzas he would soon perfect in his own films.

Born January 18, 1947 in Tokyo, Takeshi Kitano passed his childhood in the traditional neighborhood of Asakusa. Kitano has said that he holds his father in memory as both mythic and a little disorderly. House painter and maker of lacquer objects, the admired father was also a gambler who suffered great difficulties to feed his family and pay the rent. (Kitano has declared that his father was the inspiration for the lead character in KIKUJIRO.)

Kitano’s mother came from a military family and represented a certain idea of order. Her white-collar dreams for her son guided Kitano into studying science at Tokyo’s University of Meiji. In the late 60s, Kitano found himself, without being especially political, in the middle of left-wing protests and other violence of the period.

After leaving university before finishing his degree, Kitano took on assorted odd jobs. While a cashier in a strip joint, he once had to fill in for a cross-dressing comedy sketch. In a neighboring cabaret, he learned to dance, tap and body expression. Experiences like these eventually led to the forming of his stand-up comedy roots.

After an incredibly prolific and diverse 25-year career, Kitano continues to be one of the foremost media personalities in his native country. He still participates in eight TV programs weekly. He has written a number of novels and collections of short stories, essays and poetry. Also an accomplished cartoonist and painter, Kitano’s artwork can be seen in HANA-BI and KIKUJIRO. More surprising still, Kitano also sponsors an amateur baseball team, for which he even sometimes plays.

When asked how he finds the time to manage all these activities, Kitano replied: “I don’t have the impression I’m working. I’m only looking to have some fun.”





Tuesday, 18 October 2016

MAYHEM 2016 - FESTIVAL IN REVIEW.



After months awaiting the announcement of what would be screened at MAYHEM 2016 we finally got the line up revealed in September. As usual it was the a brilliant mix of world cinema, Live performance and this year even a Dolph Lundgren movie.
The online chat started straight away as to what you were looking forward most and had anyone heard of some of the titles, All he usual curiosity but one thing is for sure when it came to festival time it certainly didn't disappoint. I will be giving full reviews of my five favourite movies of MAYHEM soon so watch this space!
The Friday started with a performance by the excellent Kino Klubb with Lawrence R Harvey of Human centipede fame reading tales of H.P Lovecraft over John Carpenter inspired live music with an extremely trippy back projection. Next u we had our first film, RAW a film that had created quite a stir in the previous couple of weeks with reports of folks fainting at screenings, I didn't personally see any of the MAYHEM crowd faint but it got a great reaction and it was a brilliant film.



Next up was the UK Premier of Iko Uwais new movie HEADSHOT and even though the showing was 10.30PM the house was pretty full and it certainly kept everyone awake, Non stop fun!
As i mentioned the HEADSHOT late screening was pretty full as was the 1st movie on the Friday, I did notice the same large crowds for nearly all the showings so it seemed that this years festival had attracted a lot of recognition it duly deserves.
We are the flesh was the first film on the Friday and it's pretty much one of those WTF films, Gore, Willys and down right weirdness, Arrow are releasing it this year apparently worth seeing once for me but not sure i would revisit it! Next up we had The Rezort and many people were saying after We are the flesh they were more than happy to have a nice and easy Zombie movie to watch. Jurrasic Park, Westworld meets Zombies is how it is best described, I wasn't sure what to expect from a fairly low budget British Zombie  but it was brilliant!


Then we moved on to for me a festival highlight The Greasy Strangler, Once again Screen One was rammed and a we went in we were all give a goodie bag of a mini poster, A sticker and badge. The film itself for me was hilarious, It had a few jokes that repeated but never got tiresome. Definitely one you need to see as soon as you can! I didn't stay for the last showing Planet of the Vampires but by all accounts the new print is brilliant so i may well be picking that release up.
On to a big line up on saturday. Also we had the ARROW video stand and a stand from new horror streaming site SHUDDER who were very kindly giving away free T-shirts. Saturdays movies started with They call me Jeeg Robot. Best described as an anti super hero movie from Italy, I loved it, Had some great characters, Humour and violence and a high recommendation from me.
Next was PET, Looked like a standard kidnap by a loon keep a girl in a cage movie but it had a great twist and kept you guessing right till the end.
Then The Ghoul, A new British psychological thriller produced by Ben Wheatly, Greatly shot and acted with a very funny Q&A afterwards . Some people loved it but for me it didn't quite work.
The Scary Short Showcase is now a main feature on the Saturday and i have to say that the shorts line up this year was the best i have seen so far, Two hours of shorts but for me it flew by, I'll be doing a full post on all the shorts and one of my next blogs.
9.30 PM brought the screening that a lot of people were waiting for The Devils Candy, From director of The Loved Ones Sean Byrne, It was great, I wont spoil it for you but the killer is very creepy and it is a great return for Byrne and i for one hope he doesn't leave it too long before he returns to the directors chair.


I decided to head home after The Devils Candy so missed the 11.30 showing of the classic Blood Feast but i was knackered, You know its time to call a Taxi when the coffee stops working.
Sunday 11AM and i was back for the showing at 12 of Dolph Lundgren Don't Kill It. I have to admit i wasn't really expecting much but it blew me away, It was a perfect start to the Sunday. Review for that coming soon!
2PM was the showing of CREEPY, New film from director Kiyoshi Kurosawa. I was really looking forward to seeing this one and it did not disappoint, A real slow burn as with many Asian movies the the last forty minutes you get that sense of oh my god! A brilliant movie.
I'm not a serial killer was the last film i got to see as unfortunately i had to go. It was a great film, not what i expected at all, well worth a watch,
I was gutted that i missed The Void but from everything i hear it was fantastic, so i'll be on the hunt for that release date.
So in summing up MAYHEM 2016 was once again a huge hit, The staff are so friendly, The venue is great and the gaps between the films are just right giving you enough time to grab a coffee or beer and have a discussion about the previous film , I spoke to a few people who had travelled quite a distance and have been to a few festivals up and down the country and saying that this is one the best ones, Long may it continue. Thanks again for all involved at Broadway, I have no idea what your stress levels must be but you get it spot on!
Thank You,
Jonny T





Monday, 17 October 2016

'Assault On Precinct 13' 40th Anniversary restored special edition Blu-ray, DVD & Digital release - 28 November

Hello Folks,
Some great news about the classic Assault on precinct 13 is getting a re-release just in time for Christmas so get writing to Santa!
The release looks particularly great in the fact that you get art cards and the classic soundtrack, Ive put all the detail below and watch this space for a review of the release coming very soon.
Jonny T.



 ‘One of the ultimate siege movies’
«««««
BBCOnline

Assault On Precinct 13 is a film that truly defines the phrase cult film…From low budget roots, it has become acclaimed as not just one of the most successful independent releases ever, but also one of the most groundbreaking. The film helped catapult director John Carpenter (Halloween, Escape From New York), into the mainstream and also launched a million and one synth-heavy scores and soundtracks. Its influence is still felt as keenly today as it was on its release some 40 years ago. 

To celebrate the 40th Anniversary of this seminal film, Second Sight is delighted to announce the release of a newly restored high definition version from a 1080p transfer. It will be will be presented in a stunning limited edition Blu-ray box set, packed full of brand new special features including an early John Carpenter student short, as well as the original soundtrack CD and art cards, and is set for release on 28 November 2016, alongside a DVD version and On-Demand on the same date. It will be available on Download-to-Own from 21 November 2016. 


Friday, 14 October 2016

WOLF CREEK TV Series - Reviewed.


Hello folks,
Jonny T here with my review of WOLF CREEK the TV series.
Now we all love a bit of Mick Taylor, Wolf Creek was grim and great and in my opinion Wolf Creek 2 was even better, There was talk of another movie and still possibly maybe but then came the news of a TV Series.
The series is 6 episodes long and that feels just  right. It tells the tale of a 19 year old American tourist who starts the first episode with her family in the outback, The young son takes a swim in a local billabong when a crocodile attacks  and Mick Taylor appears and takes a shot at the croc saving the boy much to the families relief but the viewer knows that it is legendary Mick Taylor and you know from that point on things can turn nasty at any point and they do.
Mick sits with the family whilst the moody girl stays in her caravan listening to music, In the mean time Mick explains his favourite weapons and his favourite being his huge knife as its a silent killer.
A slaughter ensues, The girl is oblivious to the massacre until Mick enters her caravan, She makes a run for it but is shot by Mick, She vanishes and he just thinks she has been taken by a croc.
The series then goes on through the episodes with her refusing to go back to the states and constantly on the run not only from the police but other not particularly nice people she bumps into on the way in constant pursuit of Mick Taylor.
Some of the episodes are a little slow but the violence level is right up there with the movies. Its brilliantly shot and gives a feeling as the films do of desolate hopelessness in the baron landscape of Australia. If you are a fan of the films i would recommend this 100%. If you've not seen the films then go seek them out. Slowly becoming a horror icon Mick Taylor is as nasty and psychotic in this as he has ever been. I've stuck all the details of the release below and it is available now!
7.5 / 10
Jonny T.









EUREKA ENTERTAINMENT TO RELEASE NEW WOLF CREEK TV SERIES ON VOD, DVD AND BLU-RAY

30,000 people go missing in Australia each year, with 90 per cent found within the first month.
The rest are never seen again.

Eureka Entertainment is delighted to announce that it has acquired its highest profile TV series to date with Wolf Creek – a 6 x 60’ psychological thriller which will air on FOX UK from Tuesday 30th August 10pm. Based on the international hit feature film of the same name, John Jarratt reprises his role as murdering psychopath Mick Taylor, wreaking havoc in the Australian outback. Eureka Entertainment will release each episode digitally on demand 24 hours after it has aired on FOX TV, with the DVD and Blu-ray box set available to purchase from 10th October2016.

Wolf Creek follows American teenager Eve Thorogood (Lucy Fry, 11.22.63) on holiday with her family in Northern Australia.  Sadistic killer Mick targets the family, viciously slaughtering them for his own twisted pleasure. Seriously injured, Eve survives the massacre of her parents and little brother, and sets out to bring the killer to justice.  And so begins a chilling game of cat and mouse, with the roles reversed and the hunter becoming the hunted. A Tarantino-esque revenge tale, Wolf Creek reveals Eve’s complex and extraordinary journey, as she evolves from child to adult, from prey to predator. But can she triumph over Mick Taylor, evil incarnate? 

Adapted for television by Peter Gawler, Greg McLean and Felicity Packard, Wolf Creek is a Stan Original Series, produced by Screentime and distributed by Zodiak Rights, both Banijay Group companies, in association with Emu Creek Pictures and financed with the assistance of Screen Australia and the South Australian Film Corporation.

Ruth Brukarz-Schofield at Eureka Entertainment said: "This is a really exciting deal and major acquisition for Eureka. It will be a must own package for fans of the first two Wolf Creek movies, genre & horror fans, and any self-respecting fan of international television. We look forward to working alongside Fox TV and helping the show reach a wider UK audience, ahead of the third movie in the series. We expect this will be the first of many international TV titles to add to Eureka's roster, alongside our award winning and critically acclaimed Masters of Cinema Series, as we celebrate the current culture of 'binge watching.’ "




Thursday, 13 October 2016

Hunt for the wilderpeople - reviewed.



A national manhunt is ordered for a rebellious kid and his foster uncle who go missing in the wild New Zealand bush.
Director: Taika Waititi
Writers: Taika Waititi (screenplay), 
Stars: Sam Neill, Julian Dennison, Rima Te Wiata


Hunt for the wilderpeople could be classed as anything from feel good movie, Survivalist movie and a comedy but one thing is for certain whatever you class it as it's a great movie.
From the first night when Ricky runs away from auntie and uncle at his new found remote foster home to the end scene it's one of those films that just keeps you watching and guessing what the outcome will be.
Sam Neil who plays Uncle is a great brooding character who you know deep down has a soft side and Julian Dennison who plays Ricky is a revelation. It's also great to see Rima Te Wiata who plays auntie with a another great performance as she did in the great movie Housebound.
Also a couple of great and funny cameos from the fantastic New Zealand comedians Rhys Derby and Taika Waititi who also directed the movie. The bumbling New Zeland police officer and the social worker are also hilarious especially her Termintor references. All the characters are great in there own unique way.
So all in all it has to be said it's definitely up there with my top films of 2016. Running time of just under 2 hours but it never drags. It has a limited cinema release so catch it at the cinema if you can as some of the scenery is stunning. If not be sure to catch it on DVD.
Great stuff.
8/10