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jake gyllenhaal Archives - Funerals & Snakes

RN 3/6: Change appears to be the only constant

By Audio, Cinema, Rancho Notorious and Reviews

There are big changes afoot in the world of Rancho Notorious as Dan accepts an offer to go and work for Radio New Zealand. All will be explained in this episode.

Kailey and Dan also summarise lots of recent releases at the New Zealand cinema including Trainwreck, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Southpaw, Vacation, Last Cab to Darwin, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and many more.

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Review: St. Vincent, Deepsea Challenge 3D, Interstellar, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 and Nightcrawler

By Cinema and Reviews

In the last (non-Rancho) post I made a commitment to get back in to regular reviewing and to end my year-long sabbatical. (For the reasons behind the hiatus, it is recommended that you have a quick read. Go on, I’ll wait here.) It has come as a bit of a surprise to me that I’ve actually seen as much as I have over the last few months. It didn’t feel like it but — thanks to Radio New Zealand, FishHead and Rancho Notorious — fully 18 of the films currently screening around Wellington are films I can actually have an opinion on.

Anyway, here goes, and I might as well start with the oldest first. Which, as it turns out, is also a contender for the worst film in this post.

St. Vincent movie posterI’ve never managed to hide my disdain for Little Miss Sunshine, a film which is beloved by many and held up as an example of quality screenwriting to which we all should aspire. It is, in fact, garbage. A collection of tics masquerading as characters stuck in a contrived-cute situation in which life lessons will be learned too easily and happy endings will be unearned. Theodore Melfi’s debut feature St. Vincent also falls into all these traps only deeper. It also relies so heavily on the great Bill Murray that it manages to even bring him into disrepute.

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RN 2/4: “It’s knowledge, bro.”

By Audio, Cinema, Rancho Notorious and Reviews

This week’s reviews: Jake Gyllenhaal is a psychopathic news cameraman in Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler, Jennifer Lawrence is a freedom fighter with some issues in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part One and a tame capuchin monkey gets lost in the jungle in Amazonia 3D.

Special guest Mike Dickison joins us to discuss the thorny subject of science in the movies — films that get it wrong, and some that get it right.

Plus, important Benedict Cumberbatch news and the weekly obligatory mentions of 50 Shades of Grey and Game of Thrones.

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Cinematica 5/02: Knocking the Bastard Off

By Audio and Cinema

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In this week’s episode Dan and Kailey climb Everest in 3D (Beyond the Edge), try and break the bank of an internet casino (Runner Runner) and solve the mystery of two missing children (Prisoners).

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Review: Operation 8, Hook, Line & Sinker, Tracker, Source Code, Your Highness and Babies

By Cinema and Reviews

Operation 8 posterI was expecting to come out of Operation 8 fired up but instead I emerged depressed and dispirited. I knew that New Zealand’s default political setting was benign complacency but I hadn’t realised that the full force of a — frankly — barely competent police state was being brought to bear on the few of us who were actually agitating and protesting for a more progressive society.

Operation 8 is Errol Wright and Abi King-Jones’ unashamedly partisan telling of the 2007 “Urewera 18 17” scandal in which disparate protest groups across New Zealand (with the focus on Tuhoe’s independence movement) were violently raided, imprisoned and — now about to be — given a trial without a jury. It’s a shocking litany of state arrogance and ineptitude, all the more depressing for commencing under a Labour Government.

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Review: Summer Holiday Round-up (2010/11)

By Cinema and Reviews

T.J. MillerThis year the summer holidays seemed to have been owned by the unlikely figure of T.J. Miller, deadpan comedian, supporting actor and eerily familiar background figure. In Yogi Bear he was the ambitious but dim deputy park ranger easily duped by Andrew Daly’s smarmy Mayor into helping him sell out Jellystone to corporate logging interests, in Gulliver’s Travels he was the ambitious but as it turns out dim mail room supervisor who provokes Jack Black into plagiarising his way into a fateful travel writing gig and in Unstoppable he’s the slightly less dim (and certainly less ambitious) mate of the doofus who leaves the handbrake on and then watches his enormous freight train full of toxic waste roll away.

So, a good summer for T.J. Miller then, what about the rest of us?

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