Tagged: Stephen Kunken

Jason Bourne

Summary: Jason Bourne, now remembering who he truly is, tries to uncover hidden truths about his past.

Year: 2016

Australian Cinema Release Date: 28th July 2016

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Paul Greengrass

Screenwriter: Paul Greengrass, Christopher Rouse, Robert Ludlam (characters)

Cast: Riz Ahmed (Aaron Kalloor), Bill Camp (Malcolm Smith), Vincent Cassel (Asset), Johnny Cicco (Bradley Samuels), Matt Damon (Jason Bourne), Ata Essandoh (Craig Jeffers), Ellie Fox (Officer Jones), Gregg Henry (Richard Webb), Tommy Lee Jones (CIA Director Robert Dewey), Vinzenz Kiefer (Christian Dassault), Stephen Kunken (Baumen), Scott Shepherd (Director NI Edwin Russell), Julia Stiles (Nicky Parsons), Alicia Vikander (Heather Lee)

Runtime: 123 mins

Classification: M

 

OUR JASON BOURNE REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

It’s the film that hardcore Jason Bourne fans thought they would never see but yes Jason Bourne is back on the big screen. After ‘The Bourne Ultimatum’ Matt Damon was quoted a number of times that he would never play the role again, even Universal seemed sure of it as they reworked the franchise with a new character that was given to Jeremy Renner to play. But it seems when you listen to a quote, listen to it properly because what Damon said was that he would never do another Bourne film unless Paul Greengrass (‘Captain Phillips’) was in the director’s chair. When Greengrass is back and so is Damon!!!

The film begins with Jason Bourne (Matt Damon – ‘Good Will Hunting’) staying out of sight in Europe and surviving on the money that he makes as he goes around competing in various underground fighting tournaments. He is forced out of hiding though when his former ally Nicky Parsons (Julia Stiles – ‘Save The Last Dance’) hacks into the CIA’s computer network and makes some alarming discoveries about the real identity behind Jason Bourne and how his father was involved.

The hack alerts young CIA agent Heather Lee (Alicia Vikander – Ex-Machina) to what is happening and soon she finds herself working with CIA Director Robert Dewey (Tommy Lee Jones – ‘Men In Black’) to bring Bourne in. Together they bring in a brutal agent named only as Asset (Vincent Cassel – ‘Black Swan’) to put Bourne down while also trying to work out how to best deal with Social Media empire boss Aaron Kalloor (Riz Ahmed – ‘Nightcrawler’) who is threatening to expose the relationship between his social media platform and the CIA.

There is little doubt that Paul Greengrass’ latest entry into the Bourne franchise is pretty sleek but how does it hold up in the modern film environment? To be brutally honest I’ve never really seen Bourne as an elite franchise. While yes the films always look and they have shown that Matt Damon is a more than capable action star, they just don’t do enough to make themselves ‘different’ enough to really impress me. While franchises like ‘Fast & The Furious’ do whatever they can to make each film bigger and better the ‘Bourne’ franchise seems to just chug along doing the same thing each time, without doing much to change the formula along the way.

One of my criticisms levelled at this franchise in the past has been the fact that these films ride a dangerous path. The plots are never intense enough to make you marvel at the screenwriting while the action sequences are normally nothing any different to what we have seen before. Here it is obvious that they have tried to overcome these issues as the screenplay does have a bit more ‘meat’ to it while the car chase through Las Vegas resembles something of a sequence that may stick in some cinema goers minds for at least a few weeks… even though it still isn’t something as spectacular as dropping a car from a plane or jumping cars between high rise in Dubai.

What truly is remarkable here though is Greengrass’ attempt to re-capture the riots that have plagued Greece over the past few years. These sequences are absolutely brilliant and work amazingly well as a back-drop as Asset works feverishly to hunt down Parsons and Bourne. It is with sequences like these that Greengrass comes to the fore, and here he recaptures the same type of suspense that he wowed audiences with throughout ‘Captain Phillips.’ In a lot of ways these scenes are a lot better than the clichéd car chase that serves as a finale here and it will be the main thing that sticks in mind for a while to come.

We do see a vast improvement in the screenplay here as well. While characters like Asset may still be a walking cliché the sub-plot that looks at the CIA being in bed with a social media platform does raise questions such as ‘should the Government spy on us in order to keep us safe?’ while the screenplay also paints a very murky picture to what the audience should expect from Heather Lee. So often action films like this feel the need to show the audience who is good and who is bad without any grey at all. But with Lee the audience is left constantly wondering where her alliance sits. Is the just another lapdog for Dewey or does she have a soft spot for Bourne? It’s actually a relief to find a character in this genre that has the audience constantly questioning their thoughts on said character… and Bourne’s reaction to her at the end is what makes this film’s finale work despite the disappointment of the car chase.

Being written that way makes Heather a dream for a young actress to play and here Alicia Vikander doesn’t disappoint. She really is one of those actresses that just seems to shine no matter what role is thrown at her. Her recent performances in ‘Testament Of Youth’ and ‘The Danish Girl’ show what she is capable of in brilliant films, while here she follows what is written for and plays Heather as a cold, almost emotionless agent who never lets her true feelings known to anyone. While she’s not exactly working with a great script she certainly makes something of it. To her credit she holds her own as she acts alongside Tommy Lee Jones who just breezes through as the ‘bad guy’ while Matt Damon once again shows that he can still hold his own with any action star going around.

While ‘Jason Bourne’ doesn’t exactly set the world on fire or bring anything new to the action genre it is a serviceable film that certainly won’t bore its audience. Greengrass manages to make the film visually attractive but you are left wanting a big action sequence that just never eventuates (‘Star Trek Beyond’ it ain’t), still the film does more than enough to be considered ‘a thinking person’s action film.’
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Adam Ross

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

 

IMDB Rating:  Jason Bourne (2016) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Jason Bourne reviews: Nil.

 

Trailer:

The Wolf Of Wall Street

Summary: Jordan Belfort (DiCaprio) is the son of an accountant, hoping to make it big on Wall Street as a stockbroker. Following the crash of 1987 Belfort reinvents himself with the help of Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill) and close group of unscrupulous friends, starting brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont. Rapidly becoming wealthy beyond his wildest dreams, Belfort develops a hard-partying lifestyle that soon attracts the attention of federal government.

Year: 2014

Australian Cinema Release Date: 23rd January, 2014

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: Australia

Director: Martin Scorsese

Screenwriter: Terence Winter, Jordan Belfort (book)

Cast: Ashlie Atkinson (Rochelle Applebaum), Jon Bernthal (Brad), Loretta O. Booz (Wendy), P.J. Byrne (Nicky ‘Rugrat’ Koskoff), Chris Caldovino (Rocco #1), Katarina Cas (Chantalle), Aya Cash (Janet), Kyle Chandler (Agent Patrick Denham), Kenneth Choi (Chester Ming), Robert Clohessy (Nolan Drager), Shea Coleman (Skylar Belfort (14 months old)), Carla Corvo (Pam), Dan Daily (Honorary Raymond Samitz), Leonardo DiCaprio (Jordan Belfort), Bo Dietl (himself), Jean Dujardin (Jean Jacques Saurel), Christine Ebersole (Leah Belfort), Giselle Eisenberg (Skylar Belfort (4 Years Old)), Michael Engberg (Smith), Jon Favreau (Manny Riskin), Danny Flaherty (Zip), Marcus Antonio Gonzalez (Rocco #2), Ted Griffin (Agent Hughes), Jonah Hill (Donnie Azoff), Jake Hoffman (Steve Madden), Christina Jeffs (Venice), Spike Jonze (Dwayne), Dustin Kerns (Ben Jenner), Stephen Kunken (Jerry Fogel), Stephanie Kurtzuba (Kimmie Blezer), Aaron Lazar (Blair Hollingsworth), Ben Leasure (Brantley), Fran Lebowitz (Honorary Samantha Stogel), Joanna Lumley (Aunt Emma), J.C. MacKenzie (Lucas Soloman), Johnnie Mae (Violet), Rizwan Manji (Kalil), Matthew McConaughey (Mark Hanna), Madison McKinley (Heidi), Mackenzie Meehan (Hildy Azoff), Cristin Miliroti (Teresa Petrillo), Ron Nakahara (Rocky Aoki), Michael Nathanson (Barry Kleinman),  Sandra Nelson (Aliyah Farran), Dierdre Reimold (Nicole), Rob Reiner (Max Belfort), Margot Robbie (Naomi Lapaglia), Barry Rothbart (Peter DeBlasio), Brian Sacca (Robbie ‘Pinhead’ Feinberg), Jon Spinogatti (Nicholas the Butler), Ethan Suplee (Toby Welch), Natasha Newman Thomas (Danielle Harrison), Emily Tremaine (Cristy), Shea Whigham (Captain Ted Beecham), Joe Zaso (Bernardo), Henry Zebrowski (Alden ‘Sea Otter’ Kupferberg)

Runtime: 180 mins

Classification:R18+

OUR WOLF OF WALL STREET REVIEWS & RATINGS

Adam Ross: Stars(5)

Please check Adam’s The Wolf Of Wall Street review of that is available on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #65

 

Greg King: Stars(3.5)

Please check Greg’s The Wolf Of Wall Street review of that is available on www.filmreviews.net.au

Nick Gardener: Stars(3.5)

Please check Nick’s The Wolf Of Wall Street review that is available on Southern FM

David Griffiths:

First I do have to admit a real bias when I am reviewing The Wolf Of Wall Street – I am an avid Martin Scorsese film and also an avid Leonardo DiCaprio, yes I have been in heaven for the past few years while they are collaborated together on five films. And yes while films such as Shutter Island and The Departed would make my ‘Greatest Films Ever Made’ list, I am not biased enough to admit that these two have made some ordinary films together, especially The Aviator.

So where does The Wolf Of Wall Street fit on the Leonardo DiCaprio/Martin Scorsese scale. Well to be honest it is pretty bloody high up, because this is a good… no make that… great film. But to preface that I should say this film does go above and beyond to get its R18+ rating because Scorsese has pretty much made a film about a world of sleaze.

Under Scorsese’s wonderful direction DiCaprio plays Jordan Belfort, a young man who is introduced into the world of Wall Street finance by the ‘out there’ Mark Hanna (Matthew McCounaughey) who teaches Jordan the things he needs to succeed are cash, drugs and sex… and that you get them anyway you can.

Jordan’s first journey into Wall Street though doesn’t last after the crash of 1987 and soon Hanna disappears out of the picture and Jordan is left to resurrect himself, this time through a backyard operation that pretty much just sells worthless penny deals. But Jordan sees promise in that and soon he, and his new found buddy the loud Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill), begin their new operation that has the sole aim of making them money.

Once Jordan is once again wealthy he again reaches Wall Street doing illegal deal after illegal deal while his weaknesses are still cash, drugs and sex… this time with his future wife, the beautiful Naomi Lapaglia (Margot Robbie). Everything is going well until a Federal Agent (played by Kyle Chandler) starts sniffing around Jordan and aims to bring him down.

With The Wolf Of Wall Street Scorsese is once again at the top of his game. He is cunning with the way that he tells this story – yes at times he glorifies the sick lifestyle that Jordan lives, but he also dramatically shows the downside of this lifestyle to the point where anybody watching the film would be an idiot to want to get involved in the finance world. At times Jordan appears to be a God, but that image is shattered when Scorsese allows the grime to reach the surface in shocking acts such as seeing Jordan punch his wife in the stomach. Those that criticize The Wolf Of Wall Street and point out that Scorsese is trying to glorify this film are on the wrong track completely because he is trying to do anything but that.

The critics that have pointed out that Scorsese goes back and reuses some of his old Goodfellas style are right, but always the inventor Scorsese also uses comedy to full affect in The Wolf Of Wall Street… perhaps to give his audience a rest from the onslaught, while he is also creative in the way that he allows Jordan to narrate this film, especially in the sense that Jordan seems to be able to pick and choose what he feels the audience will understand. He may be in his seventies but at least Scorsese is still a director willing to try new things.

Once again Scorsese also gets the best out of Leonardo DiCaprio. Just like he did in Django Unchained DiCaprio relishes the fact that he gets to play an unlikable character here and he is well deserved of all the awards he has been nominated for. But this isn’t just the DiCaprio show, oh no Matthew McConaughey steals the show with his brief performance, Kyle Chandler is once again smooth in his role while Jonah Hill provides more than just comedic relief showing that he is a genuine dramatic actor these days. However the person that deserves a big tick for The Wolf Of Wall Street is Australian actress Margot Robbie who shows that she is more than just a pretty face and delivers some intense acting during her sometimes vicious scenes with DiCaprio. Yes she well and truly deserves her ‘star on the rise’ label.

As previously mentioned The Wolf Of Wall Street is not a film that will be enjoyed by all. It is a powerful, and yes at times graphic film. It may be a little long (some of the scenes wouldn’t have suffered if the editor had been a bit more brutal) but this film once again shows why Martin Scorsese is a living legend when it comes to filmmaking.

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

IMDB Rating:  The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) on IMDb

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘The Wolf Of Wall Street′: Please check The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #65 for our full The Wolf Of Wall Street review.

Trailer: