30 July 2010

Splice - out now - 100 word review

100 word review time for Vincenzo Natali's (Cube) 'Splice'.

Sarah Polley and Adrien Brody are cool/geek scientists. She wants a kid, he doesn't. They 'splice' their genetic monstrous creation with human DNA making 'Dren' (nerd backwards) a weird girl thing with bird/serpent/spider stuff in there. Polley has weird mother-daughter relationship going on, Brody isn't so sure - um, till he has sex with it (pretty hilarious in a deeply wrong way) that is and it all goes pear shaped.

Basically a cautionary 'fear of science' B-movie with a budget, there are nods to the Frankenstein story and other creature features and it's a decent laugh but no more than that. A Saturday night movie for sci-fi/horror fans...

22 July 2010

The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos) - Out Aug 13

Richly deserving of this year’s best foreign language Oscar, this superlative and impeccably crafted Argentinean trawl through the human condition draws its audience in and never lets go until the closing frame. Like a classic novel, it encompasses many disparate subjects – love and evil, the passing of time, loneliness and desire; and yet has the resonance of truth that all great works share and has the finesse to bring everything together in one literate and compelling whole.

The story stretches across twenty five years as newly retired criminal court employee Benjamin Esposito (Ricardo Darin) decides to write a novel based around a tragic case of rape and murder that he was once assigned to. Switching between the older Esposito’s growing obsession with the un-concluded investigation as well as his unrequited love for his younger, beautiful and socially elevated ex-boss (Soledad Villamil) and the case itself, the movie’s sophisticated script artfully goes from noir-style creepiness to love story to out and out horror within its packed running time. But there are no easy answers and it would be a disservice to the mastery of the writing, acting and production on display to try and pigeonhole a single scene or character.

A truly wonderful cinematic experience.