Tagged: Xavier Samuel

The Walt Disney Company has today announced that principal photography has begun in Victoria on the Disney+ Australian event series “The Clearing”.
 

Produced by Wooden Horse, the series is based on J.P. Pomare’s novel In the Clearing and is inspired by the real-life Australian cult The Family and its founder Anne Hamilton-Byrne, one of the rare female cult leaders in history. In the eight-part psychological thriller, a woman is forced to confront the nightmares of her past to stop a secret cult intent on gathering children to fulfill its master plan.
 

Teresa Palmer (Discovery of Witches,), Miranda Otto (The Unusual Suspects, Homeland)and Guy Pearce (Jack Irish, Mare of Easttown) lead a stellar line-up of Australian talent including Hazem Shammas (Safe Harbour), Mark Coles-Smith (Mystery Road).

They are joined by newly announced cast Kate Mulvany (The Twelve), Xavier Samuel (Elvis), Claudia Karvan (Bump), Anna Lise Phillips (Irreverent, Fires), Harry Greenwood (Wakefield, The Nightingale) Erroll Shand (The Luminaries), Doris Younane (Five Bedrooms), Miah Madden (Dive Club), Julia Savage (Blaze, Mr Inbetween), Gary Sweet, (Wentworth), Alicia Gardiner (Offspring, Deadloch), Matt Okine (The Other Guy)  and Jeremy Blewitt (The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart) alongside Lily La Torre (Run Rabbit Run),and Ras-Samuel Welda’abzgi (Neighbours).
 

Directed by Jeffrey Walker (Young Rock, Lambs of God) and Gracie Otto (Seriously Red, Bump, Deadloch), the series is created and written by Elise McCredie (Stateless) and Matt Cameron (Jack Irish), with co-writer Osamah Sami (Ali’s Wedding).
 “The Clearing” is produced by Wooden Horse’s Jude Troy (The Other Guy 1 & 2), with Wooden Horse’s Richard Finlayson and Egeria’s Elizabeth Bradley serving as executive producers alongside Jeffrey Walker, Jude Troy, Elise McCredie and Matt Cameron.

Summary:  Doctor Strange teams uFrom his childhood in Tupelo, Mississippi to his rise to stardom starting in Memphis, Tennessee and his conquering of Las Vegas, Nevada, Elvis Presley becomes the first rock ‘n roll star and changes the world with his music.

Year: 2022

Cinema Release Dates:  23rd June 2022 (Australia), 23rd June 2022 (Thailand), 24th June 2022 (UK), 24th June 2022 (USA)

VOD Release Dates: TBA

Country: Australia, USA

Director: Baz Luhrman

Screenwriter: Baz Luhrman, Sam Bromell, Craig Pearce, Jeremy Doner

Cast: Charles Allen (Reverend Brewster), Princess Mariama Andrews (Sweet Inspirations – Cissy), Gad Banza (Shake Rag Friend – Doc), Natasha Bassett (Dixie Locke), Natalie Bassingthwaighte (Dee Stanley), Nicholas Bell (Senator Eastland), Mike Bingaman (Sonny West), Liz Blackett (Grandma Dodger), Luke Bracey (Jerry Schilling), Sharon Brooks (Sweet Inspirations – Sylvia), Miles Burton (Shake Rag Friend – Bobby), Austin Butler (Elvis), Gary Clark Jr. (Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup), Sandro Colarelli (Tony Goochera), Josie Cross (Glenda), Elizabeth Cullen (Natalie – Motel Girl), Gareth Davies (Bones Howe), Olivia DeJonge (Priscilla), Hilton Hyppolite Denis (Claude Thompson), Shonka Dukureh (Big Mama Thornton/Pentecostal Singer), Adam Dunn (Bill Black), Leon Ford (Tom Diskin), Miranda Frangou (Nell), Charles Grounds (Billy Smith), Tom Hanks (Colonel Tom Parker), Kelvin Harrison Jr. (B.B. King), Chaydon Jay (Young Elvis), ALyson Joyce (Marie Knight), Jenna Kenney (Barbara Hearn), Aristene Kisando (Sweet Inspirations – Myrna), Christian Kisando (Shake Rag Friend – Smoky), Alex Knight (Ron Tutt), Alton Mason (Little Richard), Christian McCarty (Red West), Josh McConville (Sam Phillips), Jack McGirr (Tommy), Senayt Mebrahtu (Sweet Inspirations – Estelle), Ange Miliken (Madam Z), Dacre Montgomery (Steve Binder), Andrea Moor (Nurse Tish), Cle Morgan (Mahalia Jackson), John Mukristayo (Jimmy), Kate Mulvany (Marion Keisker), Tony Nixon (Dr. Nick), Sarah Ogden (Mrs. Eastland), Anthony Phelan (Meyer Kohn), Greg Powell (Milton Berle), Alex Radu (George Klein), Terepai Richmond (DJ Fontana), Richard Roxburgh (Vernon), Patrick Shearer (DJ Dewey Phillips), Kodi Smit-McPhee (Jimmie Rodgers Snow), Xavier Samuel (Scotty Moore), Christopher Sommers (Horace Logan), Helen Thomson (Gladys), Melina Vidler (Barbara), David Wenham (Hank Snow), Katrina West (Ann Eastland), Mark Leonard Winter (Tom Hulett), Yola (Sister Rosetta Tharpe)

Running Time: 149 mins

Classification: M (Australia), G (Thailand), 12-A (UK), PG-13 (USA)

OUR ELVIS REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Elvis Review:

Nobody makes films like Australian director Baz Luhrmann. Luhrmann’s own style of filmmaking was there for all to see with his 90s hit Strictly Moulin. From there he went from strength to strength wowing audiences with his own take on the classic Shakespearian tale of Romeo & Juliet and then of course came the gem in his crown – the visually spectacular Moulin Rouge. It seems the only blemish in Luhrmann’s career to date was the sub-standard Australia that made the country it was named after cringe.

When you think of the loud music and the glitz and glamour that Luhrmann loads his movies with you soon realise that he is the perfect filmmaker to bring the story of the great Elvis Presley to the big screen. Presley like Luhrmann was a glitzy showman who shone brightest when the spotlight was him and to the former’s credit he captures all that and more with his latest epic – Elvis.

Told through the eyes of Presley’s (Austin Butler – Arrow) long-time manager Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks – Castaway) Elvis follows Presley’s career right from the earliest days when he performed to make money for his parents, Vernon (Richard Roxburgh – Van Helsing) and Gladys (Helen Thomson – Kangaroo Jack) through to Parker signing a long term deal that would see him perform some of his most energetic shows on the Vegas.

Along the way we see the young Presley working with musicians such as Little Richard (first time actor Alton Mason) who helped form his now famous sound and also his more personal moments especially as his relationship with Priscilla (Olivia DeJonge – Better Watch Out) begun to blossom.

Most will go into Elvis expecting a movie that is full of glitz and glam but lacks substance, in reality though nothing is further than the truth. Luhrmann surprisingly digs deep into the live of Elvis Presley and touches on some of the darker moments and events that happened throughout his career.  Topics such as racist politicians and law enforcement officers targeting Elvis during the early days of his career are explored in great depth and ground the film, it is a rarity to see Luhrmann tackle serious subjects like this in his films but he shows here that he is more than capable of it.

Likewise despite the fact the film is told through the eyes of Parker Luhrmann allows the film to explore many of the allegations brought against him. Early on Parker while acting as narrator defends himself saying he never did anything to harm Elvis yet later we see him recounting times when he pushed the man to the limit of exhaustion fuelling his drug habit while making selfish decisions that would benefit him but damage the career of the man he supposedly cared for.

Perhaps Luhrmann’s hand on the film really comes to light though during Presley’s Vegas years. The flashy neon lights and the fast pace of Las Vegas are perfect fodder for Luhrmann’s style of filmmaking and the scenes of Elvis on stage in Vegas are some of the highlights of the film – especially given that Austin Butler’s performance is so believable that it feels like you are watching archival footage.

In fact it probably isn’t out of place to suggest that Butler could easily earn an Oscar nomination for this film. His performance here is faultless as he literally seems to become Elvis. His singing voice mimics the King to a tee what his dancing ability is off the charts. When you mix that with his fine acting performance that takes him through all the emotions what you see here is one of the best acting performances of 2022.

This is also one of Tom Hanks finest acting performances to date, and that is saying something given the calibre of Hanks’ previous roles. He seems to embrace being able to play Parker as a type of villain and his performance is one of the most memorable things from the film. Likewise Olivia DeJone is stunning at Priscilla, she may have limited screen time but she makes use of what she does have.

Elvis far exceeds the expectations that many will have from it. The serious tone of the film is a huge step up and a surprise from Luhrmann. He keeps control of this film remarkably well knowing the right times to unleash his glitzy brilliance and when to hold it back for some of the films more serious moments. Together Luhrmann, Butler and Hanks have created something very special, something that is one of the best films of the year.

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Alex First, Greg King, Jacqui Hammerton and Peter Krausz’s Elvis Review:

Alex’s rating Out Of 5

Greg’s rating Out Of 5

Jacqui’s rating Out Of 5

Peter’s rating Out Of 5

Average Subculture Rating:

Other Subculture Elvis Reviews:

N/A

Trailer:

ELVIS is an epic, big-screen spectacle from Warner Bros. Pictures and visionary, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Baz Luhrmann that explores the life and music of Elvis Presley, starring Austin Butler and Oscar winner Tom Hanks.

A thoroughly cinematic drama, Elvis’s (Butler) story is seen through the lens of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Hanks).  As told by Parker, the film delves into the complex dynamic between the two spanning over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America.  Central to that journey is one of the significant and influential people in Elvis’s life, Priscilla Presley (Olivia DeJonge).

Starring alongside Hanks and Butler, award-winning theatre actress Helen Thomson (“Top of the Lake: China Girl”, “Rake”) plays Elvis’s mother, Gladys, Richard Roxburgh (“Moulin Rouge!” “Breath”, “Hacksaw Ridge”) portrays Elvis’s father, Vernon, and DeJonge (“The Visit”, “Stray Dolls”) plays Priscilla.  Luke Bracey (“Hacksaw Ridge”, “Point Break”) plays Jerry Schilling, Natasha Bassett (“Hail, Caesar!”) plays Dixie Locke, David Wenham (“The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy, “Lion”, “300”) plays Hank Snow, Kelvin Harrison Jr. (“The Trial of the Chicago 7”, “The High Note”) plays B.B. King, Xavier Samuel (“Adore”, “Love & Friendship”, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse”) plays Scotty Moore, and Kodi Smit-McPhee (“The Power of the Dog”) plays Jimmie Rodgers Snow.

Also in the cast, Dacre Montgomery (“Stranger Things”, “The Broken Heart Gallery”) plays TV director Steve Binder, alongside Australian actors Leon Ford (“Gallipoli”, “The Pacific”) as Tom Diskin, Kate Mulvany (“The Great Gatsby”, “Hunters”) as Marion Keisker, Gareth Davies (“Peter Rabbit”, “Hunters”) as Bones Howe, Charles Grounds (“Crazy Rich Asians”, “Camp”) as Billy Smith, Josh McConville (“Fantasy Island”) as Sam Phillips, and Adam Dunn (“Home and Away”) as Bill Black.

To play additional iconic musical artists in the film, Luhrmann cast singer/songwriter Yola as Sister Rosetta Tharpe, model Alton Mason as Little Richard, Austin, Texas native Gary Clark Jr. as Arthur Crudup, and artist Shonka Dukureh as Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton.

Oscar nominee Luhrmann (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”) directed from a screenplay by Baz Luhrmann & Sam Bromell and Baz Luhrmann & Craig Pearce and Jeremy Doner, story by Baz Luhrmann and Jeremy Doner.  The film’s producers are Luhrmann, Oscar winner Catherine Martin (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”), Gail Berman, Patrick McCormick and Schuyler Weiss.  Courtenay Valenti and Kevin McCormick executive produced.

The director’s behind-the-scenes creative team includes director of photography Mandy Walker (“Mulan”, “Australia”), Oscar-winning production designer and costume designer Catherine Martin (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”), production designer Karen Murphy (“A Star Is Born”), editors Matt Villa (“The Great Gatsby”, “Australia”) and Jonathan Redmond (“The Great Gatsby”), Oscar-nominated visual effects supervisor Thomas Wood (“Mad Max: Fury Road”), music supervisor Anton Monsted (“Australia”, “Moulin Rouge!”) and composer Elliott Wheeler (“The Get Down”).

Principal photography on “Elvis” took place in Queensland, Australia with the support of the Queensland Government, Screen Queensland and the Australian Government’s Producer Offset program. 

A Warner Bros. Pictures Presentation, A Bazmark Production, A Jackal Group Production, A Baz Luhrmann Film, “Elvis” will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures and released in Australian cinemas on June 23, 2022.

From Oscar-nominated visionary filmmaker Baz Luhrmann comes Warner Bros. Pictures’ drama “Elvis”, starring Austin Butler and Oscar winner Tom Hanks.

The film explores the life and music of Elvis Presley (Butler), seen through the prism of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Hanks).  The story delves into the complex dynamic between Presley and Parker spanning over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America.  Central to that journey is one of the most significant and influential people in Elvis’s life, Priscilla Presley (Olivia DeJonge).

Starring alongside Hanks and Butler, award-winning theatre actress Helen Thomson (“Top of the Lake: China Girl”, “Rake”) plays Elvis’s mother, Gladys, Richard Roxburgh (“Moulin Rouge!” “Breath”, “Hacksaw Ridge”) portrays Elvis’s father, Vernon, and DeJonge (“The Visit”, “Stray Dolls”) plays Priscilla.  Luke Bracey (“Hacksaw Ridge”, “Point Break”) plays Jerry Schilling, Natasha Bassett (“Hail, Caesar!”) plays Dixie Locke, David Wenham (“The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy, “Lion”, “300”) plays Hank Snow, Kelvin Harrison Jr. (“The Trial of the Chicago 7”, “The High Note”) plays B.B. King, Xavier Samuel (“Adore”, “Love & Friendship”, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse”) plays Scotty Moore, and Kodi Smit-McPhee (“The Power of the Dog”) plays Jimmie Rodgers Snow.

Also in the cast, Dacre Montgomery (“Stranger Things”, “The Broken Heart Gallery”) plays TV director Steve Binder, alongside Australian actors Leon Ford (“Gallipoli”, “The Pacific”) as Tom Diskin, Kate Mulvany (“The Great Gatsby”, “Hunters”) as Marion Keisker, Gareth Davies (“Peter Rabbit”, “Hunters”) as Bones Howe, Charles Grounds (“Crazy Rich Asians”, “Camp”) as Billy Smith, Josh McConville (“Fantasy Island”) as Sam Phillips, and Adam Dunn (“Home and Away”) as Bill Black.

To play additional iconic musical artists in the film, Luhrmann cast singer/songwriter Yola as Sister Rosetta Tharpe, model Alton Mason as Little Richard, Austin, Texas native Gary Clark Jr. as Arthur Crudup, and artist Shonka Dukureh as Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton.

Oscar nominee Luhrmann (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”) directed from a screenplay by Baz Luhrmann & Sam Bromell and Baz Luhrmann & Craig Pearce and Jeremy Doner, story by Baz Luhrmann and Jeremy Doner.  The film’s producers are Luhrmann, Oscar winner Catherine Martin (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”), Gail Berman, Patrick McCormick and Schuyler Weiss.  Courtenay Valenti and Kevin McCormick executive produced.

The director’s behind-the-scenes creative team includes director of photography Mandy Walker (“Mulan”, “Australia”), Oscar-winning production designer and costume designer Catherine Martin (“The Great Gatsby”, “Moulin Rouge!”), production designer Karen Murphy (“A Star Is Born”), editors Matt Villa (“The Great Gatsby”, “Australia”) and Jonathan Redmond (“The Great Gatsby”), Oscar-nominated visual effects supervisor Thomas Wood (“Mad Max: Fury Road”), music supervisor Anton Monsted (“Australia”, “Moulin Rouge!”) and composer Elliott Wheeler (“The Get Down”).

The main cast of Baz Luhrmann’s upcoming musical drama “Elvis” has been set, with Richard Roxburgh, Helen Thomson, David Wenham, Luke Bracey and Dacre Montgomery among the prominent Australian actors co-starring with Tom Hanks, Austin Butler and Olivia DeJonge in the film.

Richard Roxburgh (“Moulin Rouge!” “Breath”, “Hacksaw Ridge”) portrays Elvis’s father, Vernon Presley, and award-winning theatre actress Helen Thomson (“Top of the Lake: China Girl”, “Rake”) plays Elvis’s mother, Gladys Presley.  David Wenham (“The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy, “Lion”, “300”) plays Hank Snow, Natasha Bassett (“Hail, Caesar!”) plays Dixie Locke, Xavier Samuel (“Adore”, “Love & Friendship”, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse”) plays Scotty Moore, Luke Bracey (“Hacksaw Ridge,” “Point Break”) plays Jerry Schilling, and Dacre Montgomery (“Stranger Things,” “The Broken Heart Gallery”), plays TV director Steve Binder.

            Joining the ensemble are Australian actors Leon Ford (TV’s “Gallipoli,” TV’s “The Pacific”) as Tom Diskin, Kate Mulvany (“The Great Gatsby,” TV’s “Hunters”) as Marion Keisker, Gareth Davies (“Peter Rabbit,” TV’s “Hunters”) as Bones Howe, Charles Grounds (“Crazy Rich Asians,” TV’s “Camp”) as Billy Smith, Josh McConville (“Fantasy Island”) as Sam Phillips, and Adam Dunn (TV’s “Home and Away”) as Bill Black.

Speaking about his cast, Luhrmann offered, “Elvis was surrounded by an extraordinary array of rich personalities, and we are very fortunate to pull together a tremendous ensemble to tell this story.  It’s exciting to unite some of Australia’s finest actors, from longtime collaborators from “Moulin Rouge!,” “Australia” and “The Great Gatsby” like Richard Roxburgh, David Wenham and Kate Mulvany, to exciting new faces such as Dacre Montgomery, Helen Thomson, Luke Bracey, Natasha Bassett and many more.  With the world as it is right now, our entire company is grateful that we can join together in this creative venture to bring employment and opportunity in front of and behind the camera, and to the community at large.”

Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis,” explores the life and music of Elvis Presley, seen through the prism of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker.  The story delves into the complex dynamic between Presley and Parker spanning over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America.  Central to that journey is one of the most significant and influential people in Elvis’s life, Priscilla Presley.

Luhrmann directs from the current screenplay written by Luhrmann and Craig Pearce.  Luhrmann is also producing the film, alongside Catherine Martin, Gail Berman, Patrick McCormick and Schuyler Weiss, with Andrew Mittman executive producing.

The director’s behind-the-scenes creative team includes director of photography Mandy Walker (“Mulan,” “Australia”), Oscar-winning production designer and costume designer Catherine Martin (“The Great Gatsby,” “Moulin Rouge!”), editors Matt Villa (“The Great Gatsby,” “Australia”) and Jonathan Redmond (“The Great Gatsby”) and composer Elliott Wheeler (“The Get Down”).

Principal photography on “Elvis” is taking place in Queensland, Australia with the support of the Queensland Government, Screen Queensland and the Australian Government’s Producer Offset program.  The film will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.

The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Logo

This week on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Adam, Dave, Greg and Nick take a look at new release films ‘David Stratton: A Cinematic Life,’ ‘The Salesman,’ ‘A Few Less Men,’ and ‘Kong: Skull Island’.

This episode also contains interviews with Tom Hiddleston, David Stratton, Xavier Samuel and Philippe Patel (2017 Alliance French Film Festival).

You can listen to The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show or download it for free from our Podcast Channel – Listen/Download here.

The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Logo

This week on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Adam, Dave and Nick take a look at new release films ‘Lights Out,’ ‘Star Trek: Beyond,’ ‘Hitchcock/Truffaut,’  and ‘Love & Friendship’. This episode also contains interviews with Maria Bello, Teresa Palmer, Chris Pine, Simon Pegg and Xavier Samuel.

You can listen to The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show or download it for free from our Podcast Channel – Listen/Download here.

Watch out for a special Part 3 of this week’s episode which will go online on Saturday at 4pm due to an embargo on any reviews for Batman: The Killing Joke.

 

Love & Friendship

Rising young Australian star Xavier Samuel moves between independent features from Australia and big budget Hollywood fare such as The Twilight Saga. He is currently starring in Love & Friendship, an amusing adaptation of Jane Austen’s novella Lady Susan, and he has a handful of other projects on the go. Greg caught up with Xavier to chat about the period costume comedy Love & Friendship, which hits cinemas on July 21.

You can listen to our Xavier Samuel interview right here.

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.

Trailer:

Fury

Sony Pictures have just released a brand new Fury featurette. The featurette takes a look behind-the-scenes of FURY at the strong relationships formed within the WWII tank unit helmed by Don “Wardaddy” Collier (Brad Pitt), who takes young new recruit Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman) under his wing in a battle against all odds.

Fury is directed by David Ayer and feautres a cast of Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeouf and Xavier Samuel just to name a few. It will be released in Australia on the 23rd October, 2014.