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brad pitt

RN 2/1.2: Saving Sgt. Pitt

By Audio, Cinema, Rancho Notorious and Reviews

The second half of this week’s show (fea­tur­ing a spe­cial guest appear­ance from one of our exec pro­du­cers Tony Pratt). Show Me Shorts film fest­iv­al dir­ect­or Gina Dellabarca is inter­viewed and Tony and Dan review Brad Pitt in David Ayer’s Fury.

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World War Z poster

Review: World War Z, After Earth and The Hunt

By Cinema and Reviews

Brad Pitt and Mireille ENos in Paramount's World War Z

Bloodless zom­bies would appear to be that latest trend if April’s Warm Bodies and this week’s World War Z are any­thing to go by. No blood means stu­di­os get a lower cen­sor­ship clas­si­fic­a­tion and – hope­fully – a big­ger audi­ence. But the absence of vis­cera also appears to bring with it a loss of meta­phor­ic power. These zom­bies don’t mean any­thing very much; they cer­tainly don’t have any­thing to say about the world we inhab­it, or the fears we share. They are vehicles for jumps, scares and gotcha moments (or in the case of Warm Bodies, not even that).

World War Z posterIn World War Z, co-producer Brad Pitt plays Gerry Lane, not a Beatles song but a dis­il­lu­sioned former UN troubleshoot­er try­ing to start a quiet life with his young fam­ily in Philadelphia. A rap­idly spread­ing out­break of a mys­tery rabies-like dis­ease turns his – and every­one else’s – life on its head. In a mat­ter of seconds the bite vic­tims become almost unstop­pable pred­at­ors, hunt­ing the healthy in grow­ing packs.

[pullquote]The Hunt felt like a beat-up in more ways than one[/pullquote] Lane and his fam­ily are evac­u­ated to an air­craft car­ri­er where the last remain­ing evid­ence of author­ity attempts to restore order. There he unwill­ingly sub­mits to his old boss (Fana Mokoena) and agrees to help trace the source of the dis­ease and maybe find a cure. With the help of a hand­ful of Navy SEALS and a bright young endo­crino­lo­gist (Elyes Gabel) he travels to South Korea where the first reports of the out­break only to find on his travels that things are far worse than any­one can imagine.

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Cinematica 4/10: Rabid Excitement

By Audio and Cinematica

Cinematica_iTunes_200_cropBrad Pitt is chased all over the plan­et by zom­bies in World War Z, Will Smith’s son Jaden chases all over the plan­et look­ing for a beacon dis­guised as a pizza cut­ter in After Earth, Remembrance and Camille Rewinds are the art­house reviews, and @sakura59 sums up the Sydney Film Festival.

2012 Wellington Cinema Year in Review

By Cinema

This Must Be the Place posterAs usu­al, the vagar­ies of hol­i­day dead­lines mean that, just as you are arriv­ing back at work to glee­fully greet the New Year, here I am to tell you all about 2012. The best way to use this page is to clip it out, fold it up and put it in your pock­et ready for your next vis­it to the video shop – that way you won’t go wrong with your rent­ing. Trust me – I’m a professional.

But this year I have a prob­lem. Usually I man­age to restrict my annu­al picks to films that were com­mer­cially released to cinemas. I’ve always felt that it wasn’t fair to men­tion films that only screened in fest­ivals – it’s frus­trat­ing to be told about films that aren’t easy to see and it makes it dif­fi­cult for you to join in and share the love. This year, though, if I take out the festival-only films the great­ness is hard to spot among the only “good”.

As usu­al, I have eschewed a top ten in favour of my pat­en­ted cat­egor­ies: Keepers, Watch Again, Mentioned in Dispatches and Shun At All Costs. In 2012, only two of my nine Keepers (films I wish to have close to me forever) made it into com­mer­cial cinemas and one of them isn’t even really a film.

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Review: Killing Them Softly, The Angels’ Share, Safety Not Guaranteed, Frankenweenie, Paranormal Activity 4 and God Bless America

By Cinema and Reviews

Andrew Dominik was born in Wellington but shipped out at the age of two for Australia. We really need to claim him back as he’s one of the most intriguing dir­ect­ors cur­rently work­ing. Perhaps that should be “rarely work­ing” as his latest, Killing Them Softly, is only his third fea­ture cred­it in 12 years. Chopper turned heads in 2000 and got him to Hollywood. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was an ele­gi­ac adapt­a­tion of a great nov­el, the screen ver­sion echo­ing great late-period west­erns like Heaven’s Gate and The Long Riders.

In Killing Them Softly, Dominik remains in genre ter­rit­ory but again he is tran­scend­ing and sub­vert­ing it. It’s a gang­ster flick fea­tur­ing a bunch of famil­i­ar fig­ures – James Gandolfini (The Sopranos), Ray Liotta (Goodfellas), Ben Mendelsohn (Animal Kingdom). You see those names on the cast list and you think you know what you’re going to get, but here they stretch out in supris­ing dir­ec­tions, reveal­ing lay­ers of human­ity no less ugly than the clichéd bang-bang we are used to, but truer, sad­der and ulti­mately more trenchant.

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