cinema

Film review: Tenet

Christopher Nolan continues to push the envelope of storytelling through his mind-bending plots and special effects. His latest effort, Tenet, might be his highest concept yet; an action thriller where a CIA agent played by John David Washington, credited only as The Protagonist, tries to save the world from a very peculiar threat. He teams up with Neil (Robert Pattinson) to investigate an organisation operating in the future where technology is being used to make objects move in reverse. This leads them to Russian oligarch Andrei Sator (Kenneth Branagh) and his wife Kat (Elizabeth Debicki), and when they discover the magnitude of the danger, they must manipulate time to overcome the odds.

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cinema

Film review: I Used to Go Here

 Gillian Jacobs goes back to school in indie comedy I Used to Go Here, written and directed by indie filmmaker Kris Rey. The story centres around Chicago-based author Kate Conklin (Jacobs) who, having just had her debut novel published, is asked to give a guest lecture at the college she had graduated from years earlier. This invite takes her back to the street she once lived on, reconnects her with former professor David (Jemaine Clement), and presents a unique opportunity to relive her youth.

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cinema

Film review: Babyteeth

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Australian actress Eliza Scanlen transitioned from soap to the big screen as sickly sister Beth March in the recent critically acclaimed adaptation of classic novel Little Women. She portrays another tragic teen in coming-of-age drama Babyteeth, the directorial debut of Shannon Murphy. Based upon Rita Kalnejais’s stage play of the same name, the plot follows high schooler Milla (Scanlen) who, whilst battling cancer, falls for Moses (Toby Wallace), a low-level drug dealer with bad tattoos and a rattail haircut. The blossoming romance is met with much disdain by her protective parents Anna (Essie Davis) and Henry (Ben Mendelsohn), who are both struggling to deal with their daughter’s diagnosis.

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DVD

DVD review: Arkansas

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Comedy actor Clarke Duke heads to his home state of Arkansas for his directorial debut, a film which sees him behind and in front of the camera. Based on the novel of the same name by John Brandon, the crime plot follows amateurish drug runners Kyle (Liam Hemsworth) and Swin (Clarke Duke) as they’re paired together on a job. When their deal goes horribly wrong, they find themselves on the run from kingpin Frog (Vince Vaughn) who wants to make them pay for their mistakes.

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cinema · EIFF20

Film review: A White, White Day (Hvítur, Hvítur Dagur)

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Visual artist turned filmmaker Hlynur Pálmason has focused his directorial lens on a remote Icelandic town for his second feature A White, White Day. The drama centres around off-duty police chief Ingimundur (Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson) who is struggling to cope with the loss of his wife to a horrific road accident. As a coping mechanism, he takes fishing trips with his granddaughter Salka (Ída Mekkín Hlynsdóttir), and spends his days renovating a house for his daughter’s family. By chance, he makes a discovery which leads him to believe that his wife had been having an affair, and before long, his suppressed grief and a simmering anger rise to the surface.

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DVD

DVD review: The King of Staten Island

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Judd Apatow’s movies have been the gateway drug to cinema for the likes of Steve Carell, Seth Rogen, and Amy Schumer, and his latest effort The King of Staten Island introduces another new face. Plucked from the Saturday Night Live breeding ground of talent, Pete Davidson stars as Scott Carlin, a twentysomething layabout that spends his days tattooing himself or anyone that’ll let him near enough with a needle. When his younger sister flees the family nest for college and his mum Margie (Marisa Tomei) gets a new boyfriend, he is forced to finally grow up, and part of this process is the coming to terms with the loss of his firefighter father.

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DVD

DVD review: A Rainy Day in New York

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After a film career that has spanned around half a century so far, veteran writer and director Woody Allen gets nostalgic about reckless youth in his latest comedy A Rainy Day in New York. The plot follows a student couple whose impromptu getaway to Manhattan inadvertently splits into two separate adventures. Rich kid Gatsby Welles (Timothée Chalamet) runs into old friend Chan (Selena Gomez) as he dodges a reunion with his family, whilst his aspiring journalist girlfriend Ashleigh (Elle Fanning) gets more than she bargained for when interviewing a hotshot filmmaker for the school paper.

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cinema

Film review: Resistance

Resistance

Venezuelan writer and director Jonathan Jakubowicz presents an untold WWII story through the lens of a biopic with Resistance. The plot centres around aspiring mime artist Marcel (Jesse Eisenberg) who joins his brother Alain (Félix Moati) and friend Emma (Clémence Poésy) in the French Resistance. With sadistic Gestapo agent Klaus Barbie (Matthias Schweighöfer) hunting them down, they attempt to escort a group of orphans from Nazi-occupied France across the border to safety.

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