Tagged: Luke Grimes

The Magnificent Seven

 

 

Summary: Seven gun men in the old west gradually come together to help a poor village against savage thieves.

Year: 2016

Australian Cinema Release Date: 29th September 2016

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Antoine Fuqua

Screenwriter: Nic Pizzolatto, Richard Wenk, Akira Kurosawa (original script), Shinobu Hashimoto (original script), Hideo Oguni (original script)

Cast: Alix Angelis (Clara Wintrhop), Mark Ashworth (Preacher), Walker Babington (Dicky), Jackson Beals (One Eyed Lucas), Emil Beheshti (Maxwell), Haley Bennett (Emma Cullen), Thomas Blake Jr. (Earl), Matt Bomer (Matthew Cullen), Sean Boyd (Topper), Sean Bridgers (Fanning), Vic Browder (Arcade Jones), Ryan Brown (Ken Pigeon), Vincent D’Onofrio (Jack Horne), Griff Furst (Phillips), Manuel Garcia-Rulfo (Vasquez), Cam Gigandet (McCann), Luke Grimes (Teddy Q), Ethan Hawke (Goodnight Robicheaux), Clint James (Fenton), Cedric D. Jones (Curtis), Vinnie Jones (uncredited), Jonathan Joss (Denali), David Kallaway (Turner/Blacksmith), Derek Lacasa (Len Pigion), Dylan Langlois (R.L. Garrett), Carrie Lazar (Leni Frankel), Byung-hun Lee (Billy Rocks), Heath Lemme (Heath), David Manzanares (Referee/Eddy), Rictchie Montgomery (Gavin David), Jody Mullins (Caleb Frankel), Matthew Posey (Hank Stoner), Chris Pratt (Josh Faraday), Dodge Prince (Anthony), Chad Randall (Bartender/Powder Dan), Dane Rhodes (Sheriff Harp), Peter Sarsgaard (Bartholomew Bogue), William Lee Scott (Moody), Martin Sensmeier (Red Harvest), Billy Slaughter (Josiah), Denzel Washington (Chisolm), Kevin Wayne (Monday Durant)

Runtime: 133 mins

Classification: M

OUR THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

One question always has to be asked when a remake of a film surfaces… why was the remake made? Was it because a director thought he had a more creative or ‘modern’ way to tell the original story? Was it because a team of filmmakers thought that current day technology could improve on what was made decades ago? Sadly, none of these questions seem to answer that question about the remake of the legendary western The Magnificent Seven (which itself was a remake of Seven Samurai).

Directed by Antoine Fuqua (Training Day) this remake sees honest lawman Chisolm (Denzel Washington – American Gangster) recruited by innocent widow Emma Cullen (Haley BennettThe Equalizer) whose husband was murdered when he stood up against corrupt gold mining company owner Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard Green Lantern) who has taken a town hostage as he takes land via violent means.

When Chisolm is convinced to take on Bogue and his men in a bid to rescue the town he puts together a group that includes gambler Josh Faraday (Chris Pratt – Guardians Of The Galaxy), burnt out Civil War veteran Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke – Good Kill), tribe hunter Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio Law & Order: Criminal Intent), knife expert Billy Rocks (Byung-hun Lee Terminator Genisys), native warrior Red Harvest (Martin SensmeirLilin’s Brood) and the wanted outlaw Vasquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo Cake).

There are of course positives and negatives to this remake. One of the positives is getting to see Denzel Washington play yet another strong leading man, and I would be lying if I said it’s not great to see a big budget Western back on the big screen, hopefully this is a start of a lot more.

Sadly though the negatives outweigh the positives. While the film holds up its entertainment value and looks visually good the disappointing thing is that this is modern remake doesn’t offer the audience anything different to what we have been watching in this genre for the last fifty years. There’s no new tactical ways for a battle to be fought out or even any new creative ways to shoot the movie by Fuqua and his team.

The other big disappointment is the screenplay. While the film does at times raise the suspense and tension it misses other key moments that really could have made this a better film. It is really believable that a native American warrior would fight on the same team as a tribe hunter without any form of hostility or tension? Likewise there needed to be a better explanation to why Chisholm joins the fight in the first place… the explanation comes way too late in the film. Don’t even get me started on the weak CGI graves at the end of the film either.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment though is how the screenplay lets down the cast. Denzel Washington gets a chance to star in this film… the rest don’t. Chris Pratt is obviously there for comic relief (a hat that certainly doesn’t fit his character) and ends up just playing the same character he did in Guardians Of The Galaxy. The rest of the cast seem to end up playing clichés though with Manuel Garcia-Rulfo completely wasted in his role. The only other upside with the acting is with Emily Bennett who does more than enough to suggest that she can be a leading lady in the future.

The Magnificent Seven may be enough to entertain a modern audience and provide the odd bit of suspense throughout. But for seasoned fans of the Western genre the film offers nothing new and will easily be seen as a fair bit weaker than the original.

Stars(3.5)

 

 

 

Greg King:

John Sturges’ classic 1960 western The Magnificent Seven made stars out of Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson and James Coburn (who all later appeared in Sturges’ epic WWII adventure The Great Escapein 1963). Sturges’ film was inspired by the Akira Kurosawa’s classic The Seven Samurai, regarded by some critics as the greatest action movie ever made. Kurosawa was inspired by the Hollywood westerns of the 50s, and, ironically, his film influenced many westerns that followed including the spaghetti westerns of the late great Sergio Leone. The 1960 film was a huge success and spawned a couple of sequels and even a short lived television series. And now we get this remake from director Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, Olympus Has Fallen, etc) who knows his western tropes and has in turn borrowed heavily from some the great directors of the genre, from John Ford through to Eastwood, Peckinpah and Leone.

It’s 1879. The small but peaceful farming town of Rose Creek is under threat from ruthless and greedy mining magnate Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard), a robber baron who is desperate to corner the market on all mining activities in the region. Anyone who opposes him is either viciously beaten or killed, and the megalomaniacal Bogue has assembled a veritable army of mercenaries and lawless types to enforce his will. But the newly widowed Emma Cullen (Haley Bennett, from The Equalizer, Hardcore Henry, etc) wants to stop Bogue. She approaches bounty hunter Sam Chisholm (Denzel Washington) and pleads with him to help. Chisholm agrees and sets off to round up an assortment of gunslingers to make a stand in what could well be a suicide mission. (Sounds familiar? It was a key plot device of films like The Dirty Dozen and the recent Suicide Squad.)

This time around the seven he assembles are a much more racially diverse bunch. Apart from Chisholm himself there is Faraday (Chris Pratt, from Guardians Of The Galaxy and Jurassic World), a wise cracking card sharp and gunslinger; the boozy Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke), a sharp shooter who is still damaged by his experiences of fighting in the Civil War; his knife wielding offsider Billy Rocks (Korean action star Byung-hun Lee); the hulking John Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio, from Full Metal Jacket, etc), a renowned and feared Indian hunter; the Texican gunman Vasquez (Mexican actor Manuel Garcia-Rulfo); and the comanche warrior Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier), who has been cast out of his tribe. This motley crew have just seven days to train the frightened townsfolk in the skills necessary to fight back against Bogue and to defend their village.

The build up to the key siege of the town is a little slow. There are several scenes of the men sitting around in a saloon and drinking and talking, and these scenes slowly tease out character details and backstories, and show the slow camaraderie that develops between them before all hell breaks loose. There is fair amount of humour here to leaven the violence.

Unlike many recent remakes that have tarnished the memories of the original film (think Ben Hur, etc), this new take on the classic The Magnificent Seven is quite good. It exploits the tropes of a traditional western in its formula. Many of the classic westerns of yesteryear explored the myth of one good man standing up to evil on the wild frontier and dispensing justice. But writers Richard Wenk (The Equalizer, etc) and Nic Pizzolatto (True Detective, etc) also effectively use the formula to explore some more contemporary themes of corporate greed, courage, loyalty, heroism, sacrifice, and even a hint of feminism that will resonate strongly with modern audiences.

As he showed with Olympus Has Fallen, Fuqua knows how to stage some exciting and spectacularly visceral action sequences. There is an early gunfight in the dusty streets of Rose Creek that is tense and well-staged, and it sets the scene for the climactic attack on the town. This rousing 30 minutes action sequence is the highlight here, a gritty and violent and superbly choreographed set piece full of gun play, carnage and pyrotechnics that doesn’t disappoint. In the original, the villainous Calveros brought just thirty bandits to attack the village; here Bogue brings a veritable army of a hundred men, plus a deadly Gatling gun, to the fray. This version of The Magnificent Seven has the highest body count of any western since The Wild Bunch.

The film looks good thanks to the widescreen cinematography of Fuqua’s regular cinematographer Mauro Fiore that captures the harsh beauty of the epic landscapes. The film also features the last soundtrack composed by the late James Horner, and the music also pays homage to Elmer Bernstein’s memorable theme music for the 1960 original.

Performances are a bit of a mixed bag. This is Washington’s third collaboration with Fuqua (following his Oscar winning turn while cast against type in Training Day and The Equalizer) and the director seems to be able to tap into the meaner side of an actor known for playing essentially decent characters with strong moral fibre. Pratt brings a jocular and easy going charisma to his role and he provides most of the comic relief. Sarsgaard comes across as the cliched bad guy with no redeeming features whatsoever, and he does all but twirl his moustache with a cliched performance as Bogue, who is filled with contempt for the poor struggling and hardworking farmers. Hawke brings some pathos and nuances to his performance as the former soldier wrestling with a form of psychological disorder following his experiences, and he is the most complex character here. Bennett’s performance as the feisty Emma reminded me a little of Hailee Steinfeld in the recent remake of True Grit.

As a genre, the western has been dead for many years despite some attempts to bring it back to life on the big screen with films like Tarantino’s superb and violent Django Unchained, The Hateful Eight, and the visually stunning The Revenant, etc. This reimagining of the classic The Magnificent Seven is a solid western, full of action, gunplay, and featuring a strong ensemble cast that should appeal to audiences.

Stars(3.5)

 

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(3.5)

 

IMDB Rating:  The Magnificent Seven (2016) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment The Magnificent Seven Reviews: You can also listen to our The Magnificent Seven reviews on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #195.

Trailer:

Fifty Shades Of Grey

Summary:  Based on the popular series of novels by E.L. James Fifty Shades Of Grey is told by the perspective of Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) a young college student whose life is changed forever when her housemate, Kate (Eloise Mumford) asks her to fill in for her and do an interview with the mysterious Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan).

To her surprise the virginal Anastasia feels a connection with Christian and while at first it seems they are about to enter a seemingly normal relationship things seem to be held by Christian refusing to give in to his feelings. Soon Anastasia discovers that Christian has a hidden side of his life, a side that excites her but a side that isn’t sure whether she wants to be part of or not.

Year: 2015

Australian Cinema Release Date: 12th February, 2015

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson

Screenwriter: Kelly Marcel, E.L. James (novel)

Cast: Andrew Airlie (Mr. Grey), Elliat Albrecht (Olivia), Bruce Dawson (Mr. Clayton), Anne Marie DeLuise (Dr. Greene), Jamie Dornan (Christian Grey), Jennifer Ehle (Carla), Emily Fonda (Martina), Luke Grimes (Elliott Grey), Marcia Gay Harden (Mrs. Grey), Dakota Johnson (Anastasia Steele), Anthony Konechny (Paul Clayton), Max Martini (Taylor), Eloise Mumford (Kate), Dylan Neal (Bob), Rita Ora (Mia Grey), Victor Rasuk (Jose), Callum Keith Rennie (Ray), Rachel Skarsten (Andrea)

Runtime: 125 mins

Classification: MA15+

 

OUR FIFTY SHADES OF GREY REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

Worst nightmare or most eagerly anticipated film of the year? There seems to be no middle ground with Fifty Shades Of Grey and that in turn has become a dangerous thing. Some movie markets around the world decided that this movie was so critic proof that they wouldn’t even run any Media Screenings of the film something that you can only wonder has led to some critics scratching their claws and belting this film into submission as only Christian Grey could. But this is a film that also raises another pretty serious question as well. Did critics go into the film wanting to bash it, because there is no way that this film has deserved the one and half star reviews that it has been picking up.

Let’s be honest Fifty Shades Of Grey is not a brilliant film, but it is an interesting film and director Sam Taylor-Johnson and screenwriter Kelly Marcel (who also wrote the brilliant Saving Mr. Banks) have done all they can to turn what is pretty much a trashy novel into something worthy of watching on the big screen.

Credit does need to be paid to Taylor-Johnson and Marcel as this could have very easily turned into the kind of film that would be frequented by men wearing rain-coats instead of becoming what it has – an intriguing film that although billed to be a sex romp has enough storyline with it to become a Notebook-esque film with whips and chains. The fact is though that Marcel realises early on that this film wouldn’t work if it were simply just bondage sex scene after bondage sex scene so she does something you feel that many screenwriters wouldn’t and brings a great deal of characterization into the film. In turn the audience find themselves embedded in this strange relationship and certainly wants to know what is going to happen next.

Marcel’s screenplay also takes this film into some dark areas, but not the ones that many have decided to throw at this film before they haven’t seen it. Fifty Shades Of Grey is never a film that glorifies rape, sexual abuse or domestic violence, instead it becomes the character study of a man damaged by sexual abuse himself and the impact that it has on his adult relationships. It also becomes a film that explores the sexual awakening of a young woman in a way that has been previously glimpsed at in films such as The Story Of O and Secretary. This character driven storyline and the strong almost suspense feeling generated by the ‘will they, won’t they’ aspect of the film certainly lifts the film above what many thought it would turn out to be.

The knives have also been out for Jamie Dornan whom many believe doesn’t really fit the role of Christian Grey. But really he isn’t as bad as many has said he has been. Sure he may not have the charisma of someone like a Ryan Gosling but watching this film soon makes you realise that neither does Grey. Grey isn’t a flamboyant Bruce Wayne like millionaire he’s more your brooding David Boreanaz style wealth monger and Dornan pulls that off fairly well.

The star here though is Dakota Johnson. The star on the rise who has previously had smaller roles in films like Need For Speed, The Social Network and 21 Jump Street really announces herself in a role that does actually test her as an actress. Johnson is called upon to deliver most of the nudity and she doesn’t flinch once while also delivering a performance that most young actresses in a romantic role would be more than happy with.

Strangely while Fifty Shades Of Grey has been savaged you get an eerie feeling after watching it that had this been a French film with subtitles and not based on books that have been labeled ‘Mummy porn’ than this would have been a film that many critics may have warned to for it’s risqué content. As a film though Fifty Shades Of Grey is serviceable, the characters are likable and the storyline intriguing. Plus the best way to show how is does work is that if you stick to the end there is a good chance you’ll want to know where the story ends up… so hopefully that make a sequel and don’t leave us dangling… from Grey’s roof.

Stars(3)

 

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

 

IMDB Rating: Fifty Shades of Grey (2015) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Fifty Shades Of Grey reviews: You can also read our Fifty Shades of Grey review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

Trailer:

American Sniper

We take a look at the most popular movies and TV shows searched for the internet over the past week.

  1. American Sniper (2014) – Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Kye Gallner, Cole Konis
  2. Into The Woods (2014) – Anna Kendrick, Meryl Streep, Chris Pine, Emily Blunt
  3. Birdman (2014) – Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough
  4. Boyhood (2014) – Ellar Coltraine, Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, Elijah Smith
  5. Taken 3 (2014) – Liam Neeson, Forest Whitaker, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen
  6. The Imatation Game (2014) – Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Allen Leech
  7. Avengers: Age Of Ultron (2015) – Robery Downey Knr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth
  8. Game Of Thrones (2011) – Lena Headey, Peter Dinklage, Maisie Williams, Emilia Clarke
  9. Inherent Vice (2014) – Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Own Wilson, Katherine Waterson
  10. Gone Girl (2014) – Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry
  11. The Hobbit: The Battle Of Five Armies (2014) – Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Cate Blanchett
  12. Whiplash (2014) – Miles Teller, J.K. Simmons, Melissa Benoist, Paul Reiser
  13. Unbroken (2014) – Jack O’Connell, Takamasa Ishihara, Domhnall Gleeson, Garrett Hedlund
  14. American Horror Story (2011) – Evan Peters, Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Frances Conroy
  15. Foxcatcher (2014) – Steve Carell, Channing Tatum, Mark Ruffalo, Vanessa Redgrave
  16. The Theory Of Everything (2014) – Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Tom Prior, Sophie Perry
  17. Selma (2014) – David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Tim Roth, Lorraine Toussaint
  18. John Wick (2014) – Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen, Willem Dafoe
  19. Fifty Shades Of Grey (2015) – Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Jennifer Ehle, Luke Grimes
  20. The Walking Dead (2010) – Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies, Steven Yuen
  21. The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) – Ralph Fiennes, F. Murray Abraham, Mathieu Amalric, Adrien Brody
  22. Arrow (2012) – Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, David Ramsey, Susanna Thompson
  23. Cake (2014) – Jennifer Aniston, Adriana Barraza, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington
  24. Agent Carter (2015) – Hayley Atwell, James D’Arcy, Chad Michael Murray, Enver Gjokaj
  25. Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014) – Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana