However much it may or may not be true to how the events it depicts happened in real life, Captain Phillips is a taut, gripping drama that effectively brings to life on screen the nature of 21st Century high seas piracy, both its perpetrators and its victims.
Gravity is a breathtaking, harrowing experience of a film, partly thanks to the incredible special effects work utilized to bring the film’s setting to life in a realistic way, mostly thanks to a tremendous performance from the film’s lead, Sandra Bullock.
When all is said and done, RUSH will stand among Ron Howard’s most acclaimed films. Built with his eye and passion for historical detail and his talent for visual storytelling, and fueled by breakthrough dramatic performances by Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl, the film never fails to captivate as it relates the story of two men who brought out the best and worst in each other as they battled to dominate their sport in the early 1970s.
With an A-list cast, a hot-button premise ripped from today’s news headlines, and solid, capable direction from French-Canadian filmmaker Denis Villenueve, Prisoners has a great deal going for it in terms of captivating audiences and leaving them talking and thinking about its themes long after the credits roll.
Like the former mafia clan that is its narrative focus, “The Family” is charming, clever, vicious when it has to be, and fun throughout. Fans of “The Sopranos” and DeNiro’s other gangster-related work will love it, but it’s certainly entertaining for anyone who enjoys a good dark comedy.
In Riddick, writer/director David Twohy and star Vin Diesel return to the formula that made Diesel’s first outing as the anti-hero Richard B. Riddick, Pitch Black, a surprise success: scary planet, scary aliens, Riddick being a badass.
The World’s End is occasionally hilarious, and features a madcap performance from Simon Pegg that could be his funniest in a lead role. But it also drags towards its oddly unsatisfying finish, much like a pub crawl with one too many stops.