Monday, 30 March 2015
By TIM DAVID HARVEY
"Shut up p###"! Clint Eastwood just owned his son in front of a group of guys and a young girl. To make matters so embarrassingly worse, those guys where bullying the hell out of him and threatening to kick his ass and it appeared like that young girl was his date too. 'Was' being the operative word now this kid is humiliatingly fearful for more than just his own social life. Damn dad! "These guys don't want to be your "bro" and I don't blame them" pops continues...and all he said was; "way to go old man"! "Hit the road", Clint concludes in trademark 'Dirty Harry' cantankerous sneers. Daddy's orders! Then in a few, made up years later, front and centre Eastwood senior put his junior in front of millions of people for a moment that will always be remembered. In celebratory conditions or commiserating ones of conclusion. Still Scott strikes, again and again. Drop kicking South Africa to a World Cup victory as place kicker in front of Nelson Mandela...or is that Morgan Freeman?! Wait...what! I guess that's just the life you have when your family grew up in Hollywood. Especially when your father is legendary actor Clint Eastwood, with a fistful of dollars and Oscars. The actors, actor, academy acclimated, who in recent decades, from 'Mystic River' and 'Million Dollar Baby' to last years 'Jersey Boys' and award acclaimed 'American Sniper' has shown he is a dominating and defining director in his own right. Whether on-screen or not. As a matter of fact, he may even be a better director than actor if you can believe that!? As unbelievably at 83 he is still crafting his legendary legacy when most would be retiring for the Hollywood hills.
Still for those who miss those old Hollywoodland heartthrob days...don't. You can see more than a reflection of the young Clint in his acting son Scott. He's the new American classic. Just check out the press photos. Still young Eastwood is his own man, just like the opportunities he has been given in films alongside his father, whether directed ('Flags Of Our Fathers') or other star swings ('Trouble With The Curve'). Small but significant roles that show this young 29 year old man is ready to breakout for real like his father did then. With a 'Gran Torino' (you didn't really think he cursed him out like that for real? Did you?) and 'Invictus' (playing SA legend Joel Stransky to every point) helping hand that only pointed him in the direction he was meant to find himself...and boy did he! Finding that sweet spot and knocking it out the park. Like Chris Pratt's 'Moneyball', home-run cameo, that knocked it out the 'Parks and Rec' before he became the 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' and 'Jurassic World' megastar that he wasn't even this time last year. Now its Scott's Star-Lord moment! Ready to show the world the actor he was always meant to be, aside from his genes, or Hugo Boss clothing modelling gigs. The kind of actor aiming for those pretty boy to real deal, Hollywood heartthrob, leading man ranks reserved for the DiCaprio's, Pitt's and Clint's back in the day (the godfather of acting knowing all about this, from working with Leo on 'J. Edgar' to Brad's wife Angelina Jolie on 'Changeling', two ugly-truth classics). The kind of status that a few good roles can take you to...if you're the man to do it. Like say a Jake Gyllenhaal or Bradley Cooper. We kind of think Scott's that guy too. He comes from that sort of family. Half brother Kyle's been an accomplished, successful jazz singer for almost as many albums as years. Kind of how long sister Alison has been modelling herself. Looking like a family so famous their other sister Francesca and mom have their own reality T.V. show ('Mrs Eastwood and Company'). Still between music and mainstream it seems like this young Scott is about to be the most successful thing this East of Hollywood since the man Clint.
Great Scott he just needs that one role. And who better to give it to him than a Nicholas Sparks book? The hit authors latest romance of the pages has brought to life a film for real lovers that is definitely many shades better than 50. Playing a champion bullrider ready to make a comeback, this man has been riding the bronco ever since 'You've Got Served' (credited, like in 'Flags' as Scott Reeves) and been staying on for a good decade. Now its his time to tame the beast, have his own 'Dallas Buyers Club' moment and tip his Stetson to the Western world of movies of his father, whose last name he now carries, like his first one in his full title (Scott's middle-name is Clinton like president). There's just something about this guy. You know he's going to be great! The kid from Monterey, California is all Hollywood now. Ready in the next generation of greats who would leave their home for more if it wasn't for the scripts piling at their door, like James Brown/Jackie Robinson biopic prince (to Jamie Foxx's king) and Marvel Black Panther Chadwick Boseman. He's had his leads in horrors like 'Texas Chainsaw' and thrillers like 'Enter Nowhere', as well as a Windy City career change with some small screen shine on shows like 'Chicago Fire' and 'PD', but now this is not only his big screen moment. It's his year. Last fall in the Oscar ignored, but history scored 'Fury', Eastwood started alongside the likes of Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman and Shia LaBeouf in a small, but seriously significant role in the brilliant war, tank-torn drama of 'Saving Private Ryan' credentials. Not only was the man that is now not just only seen as Clint's son instantly recognisable for himself, he was also immediately impressionable. This influence, along with his Sparks inspiration has propelled him to the stars. Now if that wasn't enough he's set to feature big in the highly-anticipated 'Snowden' biopic alongside the famous face of Joseph Gordon-Levitt, (who went from child star, '3rd Rock From The Sun' recognisability to hit recording his own future fame and formidability) and woman of the moment (you can even find her in the pages of GQ like Eastwood), 'Divergent'/'Fault In Our Stars' star Shaline Woodley. Want more for your justice? Well the Justice League will have to watch out, along with Marvel. D.C. have literally just scooped up Scott for their villainous 'Suicide Squad' movie, alongside the big-name likes of current 'Focus' stars Will Smith and Margot Robbie, hottest, young model in the world Cara Delevigne, Jai Courtney of 'Die Hard' and 'Terminator' fame, Viola Davis and of course 30 Seconds To Mars frontman and Oscar winner Jared Leto, holding all the cards and having the last laugh as the eagerly awaited Joker of this pack. All though currently under wraps, we cant wait to see who Scott will play. Just like we cant wait to see who he'll play in years to come for a career that's coming alive with 'Suicide' and 'Fury'. Pops couldn't be prouder. This kid is taking the Eastwood name and legacy for an even longer ride in this 'Gran Torino'. Way to go young man!
Monday, 23 March 2015
The Big Boov Theory.
'Home' is where the heartwarming is in this new comedy animation from the Dreamworks team that trains dragons. The fires clearly not out as this big picture could be one of the best animations of the year. Taking us 'Home' with their voice acting are two of the most popular people in the entertainment world on this whole, wide planet. Unstoppable pop megastar Rihanna gets her first leading big break after sinking big roles in movies like 'Battleship' and she's perfect here as Tip. Showing she's got more vocal range than providing the charts with a constant rotation of her R&B, pop infused, dancehall sound. Fans won't miss her music here however as it provides the soundtrack of this set. Still its the iconic voice of Jim Parsons, sounding like Yoda drunk off Kool-Aid that really sings here as Oh. A Boov alien that is cuter than a million minions and the biggest hero this side of 6. 'The Big Bang Theory', cult, geek idol supernova finally shows he has more "Bazinga's" up his sleeve than his Sheldon Cooper muse. Now after admitting that he'd like to play The Riddler in a new Batman movie, there is no question that this perfectly peculiar power player that runs with a Flash t-shirt should be in D.C's future Marvel matching plans. Besides the small screen legend is an expert at this and the big draw of this big picture that even matches these young stars with some classic counterparts in the voices of Jennifer Lopez and Steve Martin. This fun family film is hilarious and full of heart. Its exactly what you need if you feel like the one person at the party sitting down, not wanting to dance. You're about to throw your hands in the air like you just don't care! TIM DAVID HARVEY.
Wednesday, 18 March 2015
THE INTERVIEW: From bans to banners, to say this film caused quite the protest is as "duh" old news as reviewing this film months after its kept under the tree original Christmas Day release date. But still, before North Korea tries to halt us from posting this article we have to hand it to the 'Pineapple Express' and 'This Is The End' buddy comedy expert, dynamite, dynamic duo of James Franco and Seth Rogen. The leaders of the new crude survived Sony hacks, terrorist threats and even some dubious press claims that all this panic and mess over a few bad taste jokes was all a massive publicity stunt in a clever but coarse marketing campaign by the movie. Still through all the controversy the one thing that dead rings true is the comedy. Perfectly played by the pair, the support of Lizzy Caplan and the great Randall Park. Who for a moment will leave you questioning your sanity and growing to like Kim Jong-Un...his character mind you. Don't worry folks we haven't been brainwashed by the most devastating Kimmy dictatorship since Kanye/Kardashian. Between all the jokes, jives, bangs and Katy Perry 'Fireworks' this film also has something to say in the name of satire. Even if the statement moves more like a plastic bag in the air, then an ignited July fourth light from a tank canon, for a film some where prepared to literally risk everything for. The real interview to be seen here however is the one with Eminem for a classic cameo that really speaks volumes. Question, is this film worth it? The answer is 예! 3/5.
THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL: Check into the weird and wonderful world of Wes Anderson and you're guaranteed to have a pleasant stay. Distinguished guests include Saoirse Ronan, Jude Law, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Ed Norton, Owen Wilson, Jason Schartzman, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Tom Wilkinson and Harvey Keitel, but its Ralph Fiennes who holds the keys as 'The Grand Budapest Hotel' manager with a perfectly peculiar, punctuated performance. No wonder this film was up for and won its fair share of so much Academy gold. Not to be confused with the old timers of 'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' or its sequel, this instant vintage classic is the picture palette of hallmark Anderson colour and camera captured traditions. So if your craving for more Wes, then here is the man who brought you a stop animation, amazing restart remake to 'Fantastic Mr. Fox' and the first, young love of 'Moonrise Kingdom', which this writer has to give up appreciated credit for, for being the scene setting of the first date with the love of my life. Still, this may just be the decadent and diverging directors best chaired film yet in a catalogue as oddball as it is epic. This signature styling may be his best check yet. If only we could extend our stay for a few more nights. 4/5.
BOYHOOD: Growing up isn't easy and revolutionary director Richard Linklater's pubescent pained, labour of love reunites him with his 'Before' trilogy star Ethan Hawke, (looking very 'Training Day' time to begin with here), along with Oscar winning Patricia Arquette and his own daughter in the life of new child to adult star in the blink of three hours time Ellar Coltrane. This Hollywood social experiment took 12 years to make. But we can describe it with twelve words; 'Boyhood' is a coming of age story that truly takes you somewhere. 4/5.
TOP FIVE: Five, four, three, two, one! And Chris Rock's career is far from done! We could give you five reasons to watch the new movie from one of the greatest comedians of our generation. Or 500 even! Like first and foremost you could say this five finger, high-five to the five boroughs is the perfect hand honoured homage to Rock's New York home and the city that's never off our screens has barely been better printed. You could also say that this film is loosely based on some parody, autobiographical tip to the life of the Chris that everybody loves, like the majority of his earliest and best work. Hate him then how about one of the greatest casts since his 'Death At A Funeral'? Topped by a bill of the beautifully talented Rosario Dawson and Gabrielle Union, the hilarious as hell J.B. Smoove, Tracy Morgan and Cedric The Entertainer and more classic cameos we don't even want to spoil like the casting agent here that milks all this talent for all its worth. Just like the sensational score hip to the 'Top Five Best Rappers' questioning hop nature of this film. Oh and its funny as f###! Need another reason? Just go see it! Oh...and my top five? Tupac, Nas, Outkast, Talib Kweli and Common. *Drops Pen*. 4/5.
FOCUS: Look...you getting the picture? Paparazzi's polaroid's would love this. There's Hollywood's cleanest heir to the kingdom, sprawled out on the floor, head down in his own drunkenness after being thrown out of an exclusive, exquisite do. Groaning to himself through hungover confidence, meeting the sobering reflection to come, "Yep, I've still got it"! But haters chill, he does, Big Willie hasn't hit rock bottom, this is just a scene from his new movie. 'Focus'. Dark room developing and getting some exposure next to the cameras zooming into Aussie, 'Wolf Of Wall Street', Harley Quinn, harlequin woman of the moment Margot Robbie. Alongside this beach beauty in this Miami heat, pushing weights in this young mans game, instead of pushing 50 like this crazy like Keanu to believe guy is at 46. The con is on, with a slick flick that shows Bale, Cooper, Lawrence, Adams and Renner where the real 'American Hustle' lies...in spades and diamonds. Watching Smith work the cards and hands is something so special and sleight of hand proving there's still magic to the tricks and trade of Will's way. Just check a Superbowl moment in suite where our lead raises the stakes and big numbers with the man that told us we had raptors on the island of Isla Sonar (an almost unrecognizable B.D. Wong from the 'Jurassic' period) and the play by play postgame. This just may be the weaving and twisting films touchdown. Getting too cute with his star son, 'After Earth' (as actually good as it was) looked like the A.D. of Smith's career, situation critical. Lets take it back to the floor. It looks like Smith's career was really taking a punch like that squirming scene from the trailer. Then again he did play Ali...and right now is cut enough to look like he could take him in his prime. Now it looks like the prince is still fresh down on his luck and can still make a gamble pay off even if we're yet to see his latest ace in the hole. Get the picture? 'Focus'. 3/5.
JOHN WICK: Dear John if you thought Keanu Reeves career was down to the wick you'd be wrong. Here he plays butcher, baker and candlestick maker as Neo shows he's still the one like Twain. They're calling this Keanu's best film since 'The Matrix'. I guess as great as it is it wouldn't be really cool and thrilling to call this his best film since his Sandra Bullock 'Speed' reunion 'The Lake House'. As here the forever young star at a half century goes from Bogus to Bogeyman playing a man going on a 'Kingsman' church shootout professional killing spree after thugs steal his car and kill his dog. On a "they messed with the wrong man" trailer tip, all you need for an amazing, brain at the condiments section, action movies heart and justice...or hey even a plot is a cute dog. This revenge thriller dressed in leather and painted with a red mist hue is a 90's throwback, B movie styling that can be marked with an A plus. If this film goes below 50 bullets a minute, the audiences interest dies, so the ever likable Keanu justifies his Hollywood homicide by kicking even 'Taken's' ass. And yes this too will have a sequel as you can put this next to the 'Constantine's' and 'Johnny Mnemonic's' of the cult classics of the diverse range of this laid back looking but fearless actors classic catalogue. As Keanu growls in the face of everyone's doubt here, alongside a class cast of Dafoe's and John Leguizamo's; "people keep asking me if I'm back...well I guess I am"! He proves this point for real, not passively, but aggressively. Number one with a bullet. Its never "just" a dog. This one John has just had his day. Wicked. 4/5. TIM DAVID HARVEY.
Wednesday, 4 March 2015
If you thought Marvel was done rolling out the big new and big guns, even before Robert Downey Jnr's teased March 5th, "big" announcement then you'd be Green Goblin wrong. Phase 3 is about to hit infinity between that battle and the Civil War one.
After the game changer news that RDJ's Iron Man would join Hawkeye and Chadwick Boseman's Black Panther in Captain America's third outing 'Civil War'...and be fighting good ole Steve too, this groundbreaking announcement was so great it even overshadowed the hype of one of this years biggest and most anticipated films, the 'Age Of Ultron' (whose awesome new trailer broke today featuring Cap being punched in slow -mo and Paul Bettany's JARVIS' A.I. 'Vision')
Then if that wasn't enough Marvel went truly intergalactic like last years surprise biggest hit 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' and finally got the Peter Parker rights back to Spider-Man, leaving everyone not called Garfield ecstatic.
Well if that wasn't enough, rumour has it that the worlds most charismatic character and actor will also be making a party crashing cameo in Spider-Man's next solo reboot outing. Yes Iron Man will be bolting up here too in comic-book crossover tradition and you can expect some real steel, rock em' and sock em' action too as more fighting is expected for Spidey's Avenger "audition". Now just imagine the chemistry and back and forth banter between the cockiness and charisma of Peter Parker and Robert Downey Jnr? Judging from the forest fight and Thor and Hulk bouts of the first film and some Ultron teased "tearing apart from the inside" to come in the sequel, this in-camp cat-fighting is exactly what the fans want.
Dubbed the 'Spectacular Spider-Man' this new reboot looks to even have respect for Marc Webb's slinged 'Amazing Spider-Man' series in the vein of separate incarnations in comic-book lineage. Good move because well sure miss that underrated series and its perfect players of Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Sally Field, Martin Sheen, Dane DeHaan, Jamie Foxx and what could have been with Felicity Jones and Shaline Woodley.
Whether Spidey will make his first cameo in Cap 3 is as up in the air as who will fit Parkers' lens (everyone from 'Fury' standout Logan Lerman to 'Hunger Games' star Josh Hutcherson have been rumoured). Perhaps Downey Jnr will send us a Stark message come tomorrow?
Time to catch what else the Spider has in his web! TIM DAVID HARVEY.