Tagged: Michael C. Hall

 

Summary:A group of friends who meet regularly for game nights find themselves entangled in a real-life mystery.

Year: 2018

Australian Cinema Release Date: 22nd February 2018

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: United States

Director: John Francis Daley, Jonathan Goldstein

Screenwriter: Mark Perez

Cast: Jason Batman (Max), Kylie Bunbury (Michelle), Kyle Chandler (Brooks), Camille Chen (Dr. Chin), Michael Cyril Creighton (Bill), John Francis Daley (Carter), R.F. Daley (Tats), Abigail Ford (Mrs. Anderton), Jonathan Goldstein (Dan), Michael C. Hall (The Bulgarian), Natasha Hall (Madison), Sharon Horgan (Sarah), Malcolm X. Hughes (Not Denzel), Danny Huston (Donald Anderton), Candy Ibarra (Rachel Burns), Jessica Lee (Debbie), Daniel Lucente (Dan Steele), Curtis Lyons (Logan), Billy Magnussen (Ryan), Rachel McAdams (Annie), Joshua Mikel (Colin), Lamorne Morris (Kevin), Tony Ohara (Kramer), Olivia (Bastian), Chelsea Peretti (Glenda), Jesse Plemons (Gary), Brooke Jaye Taylor (Linda), Michael Twombley (Michael Bates), Zerrick Williams (Val)

Runtime: 100 mins

Classification: R

 

OUR GAME NIGHT REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Dave Griffiths Review:

 

To listen to some film journalists talk the state of the comedy genre is in tatters. Apparently unfunny comedy after unfunny comedy floods our cinemas screens. The notion is ridiculous though. It seems that films like Horrible Bosses and We’re The Millers have been completely forgotten about… hell even the local comedy Swinging Safari was a lot funnier that most journos gave it credit for. Now comes Game Night a film that certainly shows that comedy is back – not only does the film’s twists and turns keep the audience guessing but it’s sassy comedy and modern edge make a film worthy of more than one viewing.

The plot of Game Night is unique in itself. Max (Jason Bateman – Arrested Development, Juno) and Annie (Rachel McAdams – The Notebook, Mean Girls) are a regular couple with a big difference – they are driven by a competitive spirit that makes their frequent games’ nights a must attend for their friends.

However their games nights are changed forever when the couple realise that their inability to conceive a child is caused by Max’s competitive streak with his rich and popular brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler – Argo, Manchester By The Sea). With Brooks coming to town and deciding to host the latest games night… a night that he says nobody will forget… Max and Annie are already on edge. To make things worse they are trying to hide the night from their creepy, ex-friend and Police Officer Gary (Jesse Plemons – Battleship, Black Mass) so he doesn’t turn up, but that all pails into insignificance when Brooks’ real life makes the night potentially deadly.

Universally panned for their work on Vacation directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein bounce back here largely thanks to a witty script written by Mark Perez (Accepted, Herbie: Fully Loaded). While the premise of the film seems basic Perez’s screenplay makes this film stand-out. Game Night has everything that a good comedy should have – witty one-liners plus memorable characters like the dry and dull Gary and the extremely dumb himbo Ryan (Billy Magnussen – Into The Woods, The Big Short).

But Game Night also has more than that. The suspense of the plot is only enhances with a serious of twists and turns that soon has the audience realising that they can’t predict what is going to happen in the next minute let alone for the rest of the film. The fact that Perez is smart enough to have Max almost narrate what some would call film flaws with lines like ‘great two guys show up that haven’t been revealed in the plot earlier’ makes the decision to include such risky choices in the film pay off with laughter. The screenplay also gives a nod to other films, again with a smirk to the audience as Rachel McAdams declares ‘like Liam Neeson in Taken 3.’

In fact it is the chances that Game Night makes that ends up letting the film work. The decision to tone the adult humour down when compared to a film like Horrible Bosses means that this becomes the perfect date movie for both men and women while the interesting choice of cast all works. Batman and McAdams gel well as an on-screen couple while Jesse Plemons steals just about every scene he is in with some brilliant deadpan character acting. The other big surprise here is Kyle Chandler. Known more for his gritty dramatic roles in productions like Friday Night Lights Chandler here shows the world his comedic skills as he makes sure Brooks is one of those characters that the audience will love one moment and hate the next.

Game Night is one comedy that is well worth a look. Its great screenplay allows for a little more storyline and suspense then what we expect from most comedy films while Jason Bateman once again shows why he is the current king of comedy. As you sit down to watch Game Night be prepared for a wild ride with more than enough laughs to keep the comedy fans happy as well.

 

 

 

Greg King’s Review:

This enjoyable mix of action and comedy from the team behind films like Horrible Bosses is like David Fincher’s The Game crossed with Date Night.

A group of friends regularly meet every Saturday night for some old-fashioned fun, playing old school board games and charades. The games are held at the home of Max (Jason Bateman) and his wife Annie (Rachel McAdams), both very competitive gamers who met a trivia night. The players include bickering high school sweethearts Kevin (Lomorne Morris) and Michelle (Kylie Bunbury) and dim-witted ladies’ man Ryan (Billy Magnussen, from tv series Get Shorty, etc), who brings along a different shallow empty-headed date each night.

But this time, Max’s supposedly much more successful and wealthy older brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler, Emmy winner from Saturday Night Lights, etc) arrives for a surprise visit and decides to up the ante when he hosts his own game night. He has chosen an interactive “mystery” theme around the concept of a kidnapping. But things quickly go pear shaped when real life crooks invade the house, beat up Brooks, duct tape and drag him from the house. Max and the gang initially think it was all part of the game.

But when they realise that it was real, Max and his friends embark on a cross town chase to try and rescue Brooks. Their competitive spirit though means that they try to race each other to find Brooks and their efforts are driven by their natural one-upmanship. They soon discover that neither the game nor Brooks are what they seem. The chase also sees them having to find a Faberge egg, which is something of a McGuffin.

For the most part Game Night is an energetic and light-hearted action comedy with thriller elements as it mixes some car chases, fight scenes and the odd angry shot. But the plot is also very convoluted and there are a couple of last minute twists that defy credibility. The script comes from Mark Perez (the more family friendly Disney film Herbie Fully Loaded, etc). The film has been directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, who are best known for writing comedies like Horrible Bosses, etc. They made their feature film directorial debut with 2015’s disappointing Vacation reboot, and here they bring their own comic sensibilities to Perez’s screenplay and make the most of the thin premise.

The film is slickly paced, and cinematographer Barry Peterson suffuses the material with a noir like palette. There are some nice visual gags as well, including establishing shots of various neighbourhoods that initially resemble a board game community.

Bateman often has a nice everyman quality that shapes his performances. Here he seems far more comfortable than in some of the crass comedies like Office Christmas Party that he has appeared in. He and McAdams develop a wonderful chemistry that lifts the film, and they play off each other well. It seems that she has allowed Bateman to lift his game. McAdams also shows a nice flair for comedy.  The cast also features Jeffrey Wright (Casino Royale, etc), and Danny Huston and Dexter star Michael C Hall in small roles as shady underworld figures.

Everyone in the cast is given their own moment to shine. But the stand out of the ensemble is Jesse Plemons (American Made, etc) who plays Gary, Max and Annie’s somewhat creepy and obsessive neighbour. Gary used to be a regular part of their game night crowd until he and his wife Debbie divorced, and he became too moody and depressed for their liking.

Game Night is uneven, but with a brisk running time of 100 minutes it never quite outstays its welcome. And it is a lot more fun than many other recent Hollywood comedies.

 

 

Nick Gardener’s Review:

The amiable if at times flat Game Night is a little like David Fincher’s The Game done in the style of contemporary comedies like Horrible Bosses. It also falls into that cinematic sub-genre the Jason Bateman movie in which Bateman plays the put-upon, every-man, nice guy schlub forced into a dangerous situation that inevitably provides some necessary jolt to his staid suburban life.

Here Bateman plays Max who, despite a comfortable life and marriage to the gorgeous Annie (Rachel McAdams), is perpetually stressed, a condition that seems to be impeding his ability to conceive a child. The source of his anxiety seems to be his arrogant Wall Street trader brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler) who has always taken sadistic delight in trouncing Max at games and competitions throughout their lives. When the obnoxious Brooks invites Max and Annie and their friends to a murder mystery party the night unexpectedly turns into a battle against kidnappers and sleaze-ball gangsters.

The film attempts to weld a typical Bateman middle class suburban rom-com to a crime thriller but the results are at best middling. Bateman’s easy charm and comic timing work about as well as they do in other films where he’s played essentially the same character and McAdams’ cheery, live-wire performance is typically fun and endearing.  Add an amusingly creepy performance from Jesse Plemons as a weird, angry cop neighbour who’s determined to inveigle himself into Max and Annie’s life and at least in its early stages, this is an enjoyably perky comedy.

As the film attempts to entangle Max and Annie in a twist-laden action/crime/ caper/ story, though, it begins to lose its appeal. The film lacks the necessary thrills, intensity and drama for this part of the movie to work. Add to this a few dud gags, predictable story threads, sub-plots about characters misfiring relationships that don’t really go anywhere and some completely unbelievable scenarios including a ludicrous sequence at a gangster’s mansion and Game Night becomes a little laboured.

Thankfully, Game Night eschews much some of the grubbiness and nastiness of contemporary raunch comedies but it doesn’t replace this with enough genuine wit, energy or clever story-telling.

 

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5): 

 

 

IMDB Rating:  Game Night (2018) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Game Night Reviews: N/A

Trailer:

 

Kill Your Darlings

Summary:The year is 1944. Ginsberg (Radcliffe) is a young student at Columbia University when he falls hopelessly under the spell of charismatic classmate Carr (Dane DeHaan). Alongside Carr, Ginsberg manages to strike up friendships with aspiring writers William Burroughs (Ben Foster) and Jack Kerouac (Jack Huston) that would cast conformity to the wind, and serve as the foundation of the Beat movement. Meanwhile, an older outsider named David Krammerer falls deeply and madly in love with the impossibly cool Carr. Later, when Krammerer dies under mysterious circumstances, police arrest Kerouac, Burroughs, and Carr as potential suspects, paving the way for an investigation that would have a major impact on the lives of the three emerging artists.

Year: 2013

Australian Cinema Release Date: 12th December, 2013

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: John Krokidas

Screenwriter: Austin Bunn, John Krokidas

Cast: Zach Appelman (Luke Detiweler), Michael Cavadias (Ray Conklin), David Cross (Louis Ginsberg), John Cullum (Professor Stevens), Erin Darke (Gwendolyn), Dane DeHaan (Lucien Carr), Jon DeVries (Mr. Burroughs), Ben Foster (William Burroughs), Michael C. Hall (David Kammerer), Jack Huston (Jack Kerouac), Jennifer Jason Leigh (Naomi Ginsberg), Leslie Meisel (Edith Cohen), Elizabeth Olsen (Edie Parker), Daniel Radcliffe (Allen Ginsberg), David Rasche (Dean), Kyra Sedgwick (Marian Carr), Kevyn Settle (Norman), Nicole Signore (Page)

Runtime: 103 mins

Classification:MA15+

OUR KILL YOUR DARLINGS REVIEWS & RATINGS

David Griffiths: 

There comes a time in each teenage film star’s career when they need to breakout of that mould and reveal themselves as an actor who can not only prove themselves as an adult actor but also somebody who is good enough to keep finding work for the next 30 to 50 years in the industry. Now is that time for Daniel Radcliffe who of course started his career as the boy wizard himself Harry Potter.

Now Harry’s put his wand back in the cupboard Radcliffe needs to show that he can play other characters and to the young stars’ credit he has tackled some ambitious projects. Firstly there was the stage nudity as he took the lead role in the theatre production of “Equus” and then he delved into Gothic Horror with “The Woman In Black.” Now in his latest feature film role Radcliffe finds himself entwined in a tale of homosexuality and murder as he portrays one of America’s greatest literature figures in “Kill Your Darlings.”

Radcliffe plays poet Allen Ginsberg at a time in his life when his famous father Louis Ginsberg (David Cross) watches as his son goes off to college at Columbia and his mother Naomi (Jennifer Jason Leigh) is admitted into a mental institution.

Allen’s arrival at Columbia opens his eyes up to a new world of literature, the forbidden fruit of people such as Harry Miller. He finds himself fascinated and intrigued by fellow student Lucien Carr (Dane DeHaan) whose charm, wit and boyish good looks makes him the kind of person that anyone will do anything for… something that ultimately brings about his downfall.

Soon Allen finds himself joining Lucien’s call for destroying the popular literature of the day and replacing it with the risqué and throwing all literature rules out the window. Together they team up with Jack Kerouac (Jack Huston) and William Burroughs (Ben Foster) to begin the revolution. But soon the band of talented young writers find themselves involved in a murder that threatens to end their promising careers before they have even started.

As a film “Kill Your Darlings” delivers a story of intrigue that certainly draws in its audience but you are left feeling like director John Krokidas (who is a first time feature film director) needed to push this film a little further. It’s a gritty and dirty story but Krokidas seems to just skirt around the edges. Sure there is heavy drug use and Radcliffe partakes in several scenes of homosexual passion and sex but the storyline at hand here really called for Krokidas to push the envelope a little further. The full answers about Lucien and David’s (Michael C. Hall) relationship seems cloudy. Was Lucien just a gifted player who knew how to get what he wanted or was David the sexual predator that Lucien and his mother suggested he was. Then of course there’s the other big question that gets thrown up but never really answered, why did Allen tell David where Lucien was when he knew the young boy was trying to escape him. The fact that these questions are never answered ends up with “Kill Your Darlings” becoming a good-rather-than-great film.

The power of this film though lays in the characterisation and the way those characters are portrayed by the actors involved. Radcliffe portrays the naive and often confused Ginsberg quite well. Archival footage shows that Radcliffe captured a lot of Ginsberg’s awkward facial expressions extremely well and the young actor can certainly hold his head up high as he does more than enough to suggest that he has a lengthy career ahead of him. As previously mentioned Radcliffe does deliver some risqué scenes but just imagine what could have been if Krokidas had decided to take this film a little further.

Krokidas has also surrounded Radcliffe with some fine acting talent. Jack Huston delivers a strong performance as he shows Jack Kerouac in a very different light to the way he was portrayed in “On The Road” while Ben Foster is haunting and virtually unrecognisable as he delves deeply into some character acting while he plays William Burroughs.

The standout actor here though is Dane DeHaan whose roles in films such as “Lawless,” “Chronicle” and “Metallica’s Through The Never” have been promising, but here he delivers. DeHaan seems to call on the skills of a young Leonardo DiCaprio as he shines in a role that will certainly be deemed his breakout role in the years to come. His performance is strong throughout and he often steals scenes away from his much more experienced co-stars.

Like “Howl” and “On The Road” before it “Kill Your Darlings” is an interesting insight to the tragic and somewhat strange lives of some of America’s most famous literacy giants, and while the film is a great watch it will always be a film that leaves you wondering what could have been if the director had the courage to go that little bit further.

Stars(3.5)

Greg King: Stars(2.5)

Please check Greg’s review of ‘Kill Your Darlings’ that is available on www.filmreviews.net.au

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

IMDB Rating:  Kill Your Darlings (2013) on IMDb

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Kill Your Darlings′: Please check our Kill Your Darlings review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep 62.

Trailer:

Chad Michael Murray

The wheeling and dealing has been getting into full swing at Sundance, below is a list of the films that have currently been sold and who has bought them.

Ain’t Them Bodies Saints – DIR: David Lowery STARS: Casey Affleck, Keith Carradine, Ben Foster, Rooney Mara

Purchased by: IFC Films

Austenland – DIR: Jerusha Hess STARS: Jennifer Coolidge, JJ Feild, Bret McKenzie, Keri Russell

Purchased by: Sony Pictures/Sony Pictures Classics

Before Midnight – DIR: Richard Linklater STARS: Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, Ariane Labed

Purchased by: Sony Pictures Classics

Blackfish – DIR: Gabriela Cowperthwaite

Purchased by: CNN Films/Magnolia Pictures

Concussion – DIR: Stacie Passon STARS: Ben Shenkman, Maggie Siff, Johnathan Tchaikovsky, Robin Weigert

Purchased by: Radius/TWC

Dirty Wars – DIR: Rick Rowley STARS: Nasser Al Aulaqi, Saleha Al Aulaqi, Muqbal Al Kazemi, Abdul Rahman Barman

Purchased by: Sundance Selects

Don Jon’s Addiction – DIR: Joseph Gordon-Levitt STARS: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Brie Larson, Julianne Moore

Purchased by: Relativity

Fruitvale – DIR: Ryan Coogler STARS: Kevin Durand, Michael B. Jordan, Chad Michael Murray, Octavia Spencer

Purchased by: The Weinstein Company

History Of The Eagles Part 1 – DIR: Alison Ellwood STARS: Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Timothy B. Schmit, Joe Walsh

Purchased by: Showtime

Inequality For All – DIR: Jacob Kornbluth

Purchased by: Radius/TWC

Jobs – DIR: Joshua Michael Stern STARS: Amanda Crew, Josh Gad, Ashton Kutcher, Dermot Mulroney

Purchased by: Open Road Films

Kill Your Darlings – DIR: John Krokidas STARS: Dane DeHaan, Michael C. Hall, Elizabeth Olsen, Daniel Radcliffe

Purchased by: Sony Picture Classics

Lovelace – DIR: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman STARS: Peter Sarsgaard, Amanda Seyfried, Sharon Stone, Juno Temple

Purchased by: Radius/TWC

Morning – DIR: Leland Orser STARS: Elliott Gould, Laura Linney, Leland Orser, Jeanne Triplehorn

Purchased by: Anchor Boy

Newlyweds – DIR: Shaka King STARS: Amari Cheatoe, Trae Harris, Tone Tank, Isiah Whitlock Jr.

Purchased by: Phase 4 Films

Prince Avalanche – DIR: David Gordon Green STARS: Emile Hirsch, Lance Le Gault, Joyce Payne, Paul Rudd

Purchased by: Magnolia Pictures

Show Trial: The Story Of Pussy Riot – DIR: Mike Lerner, Maxim Pozdorovkin STARS: Maria Alyokhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova

Purchased by: HBO Documentary Films

S-VHS – DIR: Simon Barrett, Jason Eisener STARS: Kelsy Abbott, L.C. Holt, Hannah Hughes, Lawrence Michael Levine

Purchased by: Magnolia Pictures

The Look Of Love – DIR: Michael Winterbottom STARS: Steve Coogan, Anna Friel, Stephen Fry, Imogen Poots

Purchased by: IFC Films

The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear – DIR: Tinatin Gurchiani

Purchased by: Icarus Films

The Rambler – DIR: Calvin Reeder STARS: James Cady, Natasha Lyonne, Dermot Mulroney, Lindsay Pulsipher

Purchased by: Anchor Bay Films

The Spectacular Now – DIR: James Ponsoldt STARS: Kyle Chandler, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Shailene Woodley

Purchased by: A24

The Summit – DIR: Nick Ryan

Purchased by: Sundance Selects

The Way, Way Back – DIR: Nat Faxon, Jim Rash STARS: Steve Carell, AnnaSophia Robb, Sam Rockwell, Amanda Peet

Purchased by: Fox Searchlight

Toy’s House – DIR: Jordan Vogt-Roberts STARS: Moises Arias, Alison Brie, Nick Offerman, Mary Lynn Rajskub

Purchased by: CBS Films

Twenty Feet From Stardom – DIR: Morgan Neville STARS: Lou Adler, Stephanie ‘Stevvi’ Alexander, Patti Austin, Chris Botti

Purchased by: Radius/TWC

Two Mothers – DIR: Anne Fontaine STARS: Ben Mendelsohn, Xavier Samuel, Naomi Watts, Robin Wright

Purchased by: Exclusive Releasing

We Are What We Are – DIR: Jim Mickle STARS: Ambyr Childers, Kelly McGillis, Michael Parks, Wyatt Russell

Purchased by: Entertainment One