Every Sunday, Gill delves into his archive of over 800 movie reviews and randomly selects three for your enjoyment! Here are this week’s…
Saw 3D (Saw VII)
The final chapter (or maybe not) of the Saw franchise is about as good as Saws II through VI, and perhaps that’s fitting, since none of the movies since the first one have been particularly noteworthy. Fans of the films will get everything they want out of Saw 3D, though, as there are plenty of traps and loads of gore, and we actually get to see the iconic “reverse bear trap” rig kill someone for the first time. The movie’s opening scene starts strong by showing one of the gruesome kill traps being put on display in a public place, but unfortunately it’s never followed up on (or even mentioned again), and the movie quickly becomes a typical Saw film immediately thereafter. I do have to give some credit to the fact that the movie does try to tie up all the loose ends left hanging from the previous films – there’s something to be said for consistency and continuity – and it’s nice to see some of the old cast members turn up for one last bloodbath. On a final note, I saw this in 2D and I don’t think it suffered at all for it, so that’s probably a plus. If you like all the other Saw movies, then see this one. If you don’t like any of them, this won’t change your mind.
3 out of 5
Shrek Forever After
I was surprised that I enjoyed this fourth instalment in the Shrek franchise as much as I did. While the cutesy fairytale setting combined with anachronistic pop culture references and language gimmick ran its course long ago, there are still a number of clever moments, Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas all give great vocal performances once more (I kept forgetting Myers was voicing Shrek, and being saddened by the fact that Eddie Murphy can still be funny but chooses not to be in live-action role), and the movie ends on a genuinely heartwarming note. Shrek Forever After is about as good as Shrek 2, and succeeds in washing the bland flavour of Shrek the Third from our cinematic pallettes. A quality kids film, and a step above a lot of the computer animated cartoon movies of recent years.
3.5 out of 5
A movie that feels like it’s from another time, somehow. The colour scheme, the title card, and something about the cinematography made me feel like I was watching a grindhouse movie from the 80’s as I viewed Hanna – and that’s not a bad thing. Saoirse Ronan gives a terrific, badass performance as Hanna, a girl trained in isolation by her father (Eric Bana, also badass) to become the perfect assassin. The movie manages to balance quality action with compelling character development, and ultimately views like a kind of bloody, modern fairytale. The Chemical Brothers’ score adds an additional piece of awesomeness to the proceedings. I will watch this a hundred times more before I bother with Joe Wright’s previous films, The Soloist and Atonement, which did absolutely nothing for me.
3.5 out of 5
See you next Sunday for three more thrilling short reviews!