Tagged: Jason Isaacs

Red Dog; True Blue Poster

Summary: An iconic Australian story of family, friendship and adventure, between a young boy and a scrappy one-of-a-kind dog that would grow up to become an Australian legend.

Year: 2016

Australian Cinema Release Date: 26th December 2016

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: Australia

Director: Kriv Stenders

Screenwriter: Daniel Taplitz

Cast: Josie Alec (Abby), Caitlin Berestford-Ord (Catherine), Syd Brisbane (Big John), Bryan Brown (Grandpa), Kee Chan (Jimmy Umbrella), Justine Clarke (Diane Carter), Thomas Cocquerel (Stemple), Jon Doust (McLeod), Alla Hand (Gilliam Shaw), Jason Isaacs (Michael Carter), John Jarratt (Lang Hangcock), Hanna Mangan Laurence (Betty), Steve Le Marquand (Little John), Winta McGrath (Nicholas Carter), Zen McGrath (Theo Carter), Levi Miller (Mick), Kelton Pell (Durack), Igor Sas (Dr. Samuel), Calen Tassone (Taylor Pete)

Runtime: 88 mins

Classification: PG

OUR RED DOG: TRUE BLUE REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

Nobody ever expected the original Red Dog film to go onto the greatness that it did when it was released back in 2011. Somehow the little Aussie family film showed the world that the Australian film industry wasn’t dead. While the industry had seen many Aussie filmmakers try the comedy vein, it seems it was the family comedy vein that still had life in it. The film grossed over $21 million in Australia alone.

Of course, not surprisingly word of a Red Dog sequel started to seep through while the first film was still raking in money at the box office. The only man who didn’t seem interested in the concept was the director Kriv Stenders (Boxing Day) who was already busy on his next project – the cult film Kill Me Three Times starring Simon Pegg. Along the way, though something changed and now five years later we find ourselves sitting down to watch a prequel to the original – Red Dog: True Blue.

There is little wonder that Stenders was nervous about making another Red Dog film, a dud could tarnish the legacy that the first left behind. Luckily though Stenders once again teamed up with screenwriter Daniel Taplitz (Chaos Theory) and together the two men came up with a film that is different enough from the original film to give it its own identity, but not different enough to alienate fans of the first in the series.

This second film is told through the eyes of a Perth father Michael Carter (Jason IsaacsBlack Hawk Down) who after watching the original Red Dog movie in the cinema recounts the story of how he was actually the original owner of Red… or Blue as he was called back then. His story tells of his younger self (Levi MillerPan) being forced to leave home because of his mentally unstable mother and moving to outback Western Australia where he lived with his grandfather (Bryan BrownAustralia). On a cattle station.

The story sees Mick meet Blue and tells of the adventures that they had together including Mick falling in love for the first time, with his tutor the young and beautiful Betty (Hanna Mangan Laurence Acolytes).

Fans of the original film will see very early on that Stenders and Taplitz are onto a winning formula when they see the creative way that leads to Michael Carter telling his story. While it seems a little strange for the film to be referencing the first film so openly, but at that same time it so creative that you can’t help but applaud at the pure genius act that the two men have managed to deliver.

While Red Dog: True Blue is creative it does lack a little of the emotion that we felt from the first film. I’m man enough to admit that I teared up twice during Red Dog, but here Stenders and co takes the film in a completely different direction, this time the film is a pure coming of age story that sees a young boy take his dog with him on the start of life’s journey. While the film does also have a few moments that are likely to make you chuckle it doesn’t have anywhere near as many comedic moments as the first movie either.

Those that benefit from Stenders work here is the cast. Levi Miller is almost unrecognisable as the younger version of Mick and he settles into the period style of the film well. It is great to see Hanna Mangan Laurence back on the big screen and hopefully, we see her there again soon while as usual Bryan Brown leads the way with a mature performance as he leads the cast despite seemingly being in auto-pilot for most of the film. The big scene stealer here though is John Jarratt (Wolf Creek) who has a cameo as mining magnate Lang Hancock… and boy is it a cameo to remember.

Red Dog: True Blue is a smooth, enjoyable ride for the whole family. It might not reach the heights that the first film did but it is still a film that holds its own and reminds audiences just how fun it still can be to watch a coming-of-age story. The fact that it is being released on Boxing Day makes it the perfect family cinema outing this holiday season.

Stars(3)

 

 

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(3)

 

IMDB Rating:  No rating available.

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Red Dog: True Blue Reviews: Dave Griffiths broadcast a Red Dog: True Blue on 2UE’s That’s Entertainment on the 8th December, 2016.

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Fury

Summary: April, 1945. A battle-hardened army sergeant named Wardaddy commands a Sherman tank and her five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines.

Year: 2014

Australian Cinema Release Date: 23rd October, 2014

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA, UK, China

Director: David Ayer

Screenwriter: David Ayer

Cast: Jon Bernthal (Grady ‘Coon-Ass’ Travis), Jamie Ben Chambers (Pvt. James ‘Gremlin’), Daniel Dorr (Lt. Obersturmfuher Schmidt), Scott Eastwood (Sergeant Miles), Bernhard Forcher (Sturmbannfuhrer Muller), Edin Gali (Sgt. Hauptscharfuhrer Wolfe), Brad William Henke (Sergeant Davis), Jason Isaacs (Captain Waggoner), Eugenia Kuzmina (Hilda Meier), Shia LaBeouf (Boyd ‘Bible’ Swan), Logan Lerman (Norman Ellison), Christopher Maleki (Kettle), Anamaria Marinca (Irma), Osi Okerafor (Benton), Jim Parrack (Sergeant Binkowski), Michael Pena (Trini ‘Gordo’ Garcia), Brad Pitt (Don ‘Wardaddy’ Collier), Xavier Samuel (Lieutenant Parker), Clayton T. Smith (Foothill), Laurence Spellman (Sergeant Dillard), Kevin Vance (Sergeant Peterson), Alicia von Rittberg (Emma), Tom Whelehan (Foxman)

Runtime: 134 mins

Classification: MA15+

 

OUR FURY REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Greg King: You can check out Greg’s Fury review on www.filmreviews.net.au

Stars(3.5)

 

David Griffiths:

There have been countless films over the years that have taken audiences deep into the horrors and nastiness of war. Of course there are the perennial favourites like Apocalypse Now and Saving Private Ryan which will always be trotted out when these kinds of films have been talked about. There are also Australian classics like Breaker Morant and Gallipoli which also take a look at the darker side of history’s battles.

Now director/writer David Ayer has decided to enter that fray with the much publicised Fury. Now the thought of Ayer at the helm of a war film is almost enough to make you salivate. His shaky cam style normally has the effect on you as an audience member that makes you feel like you are right there and part of the action. The thought of that happening in a war is like porn to those that label themselves a ‘war film fan.’ Then Ayer kind of shocked everyone by announcing that the cast of Fury would consists of Brad Pitt, Percy Jackson himself Logan Lerman and the man who is trying very hard to make himself Hollywood’s biggest nutbag Shia LaBeouf. But to Ayer’s credit, he damn well nails it.

The film centres around a tank crew finding themselves travelling into Germany during the latter days of World War II. The seasoned crew is made up of fearless leader Don ‘Wardaddy’ Collier (Brad Pitt), the religion spouting Boyd ‘Bible’ Swan (Shia LaBeouf), sassy mouthed Trini ‘Gordo’ Garcia (Michael Pena) and the man with the don’t-mess-with-me attitude Grady ‘Coon-Ass’ Travis (Jon Bernthal).

With the Allied Forces copping a pounding as they journey further into enemy territory it’s not surprising that one of Wardaddy’s crew dies in action, but what he doesn’t expect is that the replacement crew member that he is sent is the very green Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman), a man who has not only seen no battle so far but was chosen to be in the Army for the fact that he could type at sixty words a minute rather than his abilities in killing Nazi soldiers.

With all the fears that I had when I first walked into the cinema to see Fury aside, Ayer really needs a big pat on the back for congratulations. Fury is not only well acted by a cast that many feared were not up to the task but also looks remarkably good. The fight scenes and even the CGI look really, really natural which is not bad when you consider that this film was put together with a budget of only $68 million. That’s right Ayer has managed to put together an epic war movie for less than what most studios would spend on a comedy these days.

Fury’s strong point is that it is engaging and suspenseful. Ayer quickly educates his audience on the fact that he can deliver a scene with two German woman having lunch with the tank crew and make it just as suspenseful as any tank battle that also takes place during the film. He also shows very early on that this is a film that is going to truly show the horrors of war, and that means some blood splatter. Those expecting Brad Pitt to be playing a pretty boy are quickly shocked out of their seats by the opening scene in which Pitt leaps of a tank and kills a Nazi soldier by driving a knife right through his eye.

Ayer drags his audience deep not only into the inner workings of a tank but also into the inner minds of a tank crew while bringing a constant feel of suspense to the film. Even sitting up in the cinema with your popcorn and drink you could feel the tenseness coming from the screen as you are never really sure what lays around each corner that the tank slowly takes. But Ayer’s talents as a director are really on show with the finale battle scene and with one of the most gun wrenching scenes you are likely to see in a cinema this year when Wardaddy literally forces Norman to commit his first Nazi kill. A drawn out five minute scene that looks like it would have drained the two actors involved while also having the audience right on the edge of their seat.

But Ayer’s brilliance and the fact that he is willing to break Hollywood rules left, right and centre throughout Fury only leaves you wondering why he would then allow for two extremely limp wristed moments to also sneak through the editing process. While not wanting to spoil the film for anybody that hasn’t seen it there are two weak scenes later in this film that just don’t fit with the tone set up throughout the rest of the movie. One contains perhaps the kindest S.S Soldier of all time and the second has some of those rare Nazi grenades that could explode right next to someone without leaving a single mark on them.

One of the most powerful things about Fury is that Ayer gets the absolute best out of his cast. Long gone are the days where Pitt is selected on just his looks alone. Here he puts on a clinic of character acting, despite seeming to be the only U.S. Solider capable of keeping perfect hair throughout the whole battle campaign.

Pitt is also well supported by his younger cast members. LaBeouf and Lerman easily show that they have perhaps been hiding their true talents from cinema audiences previously in the gigantic blockbusters that they have headlined. LaBeouf shows, like he has with Nymphomaniac, that it is time for him to start making some serious films and no longer be labelled ‘that guy from Transformers’ and it seems almost unfair that he is labelled ‘wacky’ for going to the extremes of pulling teeth for a role when those same people praise Christian Bale for putting his health at risk to lose weight for a film. Lerman also surprises those who only know him as Percy Jackson with a well rounded performance of a soldier who is almost in a constant state of shock.

Fury is one film that really does deliver to film fans with some very vast differences in taste. Ayder does enough with his action scenes to keep the adrenalin junkies happy, but also make this a character piece with some serious dramatic moments that really explore just how damaged men of a war can become. Despite the two weak moments towards the films finale Fury is still one of the better films of 2014.

Stars(4)

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(4)

 

IMDB Rating: Fury (2014) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Reviews of ‘Fury′: For our full Fury review please check The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #102 . You can also check Dave’s Fury review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

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