Author: Keith Adams

Blue Ruin (Macon Blair, Devin Ratray, Amy Hargreaves) REVIEW

Title: Blue Ruin Studio/Distributor: Radius|TWC, Lab of Madness, Neighborhood Watch, Paradise City Cast: Macon Blair, Devin Ratray, Amy Hargreaves, Kevin Kolack, Eva Plumb, David W. Thompson, Brent Werzner, Stacy Rock Director: Jeremy Saulnier Writer: Jeremy Saulnier Synopsis: Mysterious misanthrope Dwight lives a quiet life but that quiet life is interrupted when he returns to his childhood home to carry out an act of vengeance against Wade Cleland, the man who killed his parents. Proving himself to be a formidable killer, he soon finds himself heading into a showdown with the Cleland gang in order to protect his estranged family. Review: There have been many tales of revenge, some of which lean into the realm of action. “Death Wish” & the original “Oldboy” are prime examples. Other times, they lean into character-driven dramas. “Blue Ruin” falls into that in-between. While some of the action in this film come in small, brutally violent bursts, the thing that drives this revenge drama/thriller is the development of the lead anti-hero protagonist Dwight (Blair), a beach bum who lives a slovenly lifestyle. He has no home, his family has abandoned him, the only kind of refreshments that he can replenish himself with are the ones inside a trashcan. However, Dwight finds purpose when he learns that his parents’ killer, Wade Cleland, is being released from prison. Dwight’s violent confrontation with Wade soon makes him...

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Pontypool (Stephen McHattie, Lisa Houle, Georgina Reilly) CAPSULE REVIEW

Title: Pontypool Studio/Distributor: IFC Midnight/Maple Pictures/Crescent Road Pictures Cast: Stephen McHattie, Lisa Houle, Georgina Reilly, Hrank Alianak, Rick Roberts, Daniel Fathers, Beatriz Yuste, Tony Burgess, Boyd Banks, Hannah Fleming, Rachel Burns, Laura Nordin, Diane Gordon, Daniel Park, Yvonne Moore, Raffaele Carniato Director: Bruce McDonald Writer: Tony Burgess (adapted from his novel of the same name) Synopsis: Big city radio jockey Grant Mazzy was from his old radio job and has been relegated to hosting an early A.M. radio show in the small Ontario town of Pontypool. On this particular morning, Grant and his staffers, station manager Sydney Blair & technical assistant Laurel-Ann Drummond, finds themselves facing a virus that is rapidly spreading and causing its victims to speaking incoherently and committing unspeakable, gruesome acts. Now a solution must be found before things take a turn for the severely worse. The Long of It: Ever since my brother & sister introduced me to horror movies, I’ve been a big fan of the genre. Whether it was great or straight-up mediocre, gory or spooky, there’s something about horror that leaves me wanting more. Then, I noticed that there was a string of horror movies that came from many places all over the word: the United Kingdom, Mexico, Australia, Asia, Canada. Most of Canada’s horror films came from cutting edge visionaries like David Cronenberg, who always made it a mission to ensure...

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The Man With The Iron Fists (Russell Crowe, RZA, Lucy Liu) REVIEW

Title: The Man With the Iron Fists Studio/Distributor: Universal Studios/Strike Entertainment Cast: Russell Crowe, Cung Le, Lucy Liu, Byron Mann, RZA, Rick Yune, Dave Bautista, Jamie Chung, Daniel Wu, Zhu Zhu, Gordon Liu, Andrew Ng, Kuan Tai Chen, Xue Jing Yao, Telly Liu Director: RZA Writer(s): RZA (story), RZA, Eli Roth (screenplay) Plot Synopsis: On the hunt for a fabled treasure of gold, a band of warriors, assassins, and a rogue British soldier descend upon a village in feudal China, where a humble blacksmith looks to defend himself and his fellow villagers. Bottom Line: I became an avid fan of classic martial arts movies when I saw Bruce Lee in “The Big Boss” (aka Fists of Fury) & “Fist of Fury” (aka The Chinese Connection). The way they were made, the way they were shot, the way the fights were choreographed. It was exhilarating, nonetheless. Soon after, The Weinstein’s Dragon Dynasty DVD line fueled my fandom even further with “SPL Kill Zone”, “City of Violence”, “Invincible Target”, as well as their Shaw Brothers titles like “Flying Guillotine”, “Flying Guillotine II” & “The Avenging Eagle”. I got excited for this smashing homage to the Hong Kong martial arts films of yesteryear when I saw a trailer and discovered quickly that I was in for a hell of a ride when Quentin Tarantino was presenting it, hip-hop iconoclast The RZA (of...

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Top 5 Best AND Worst Movies of 2012 – SPECIAL RETROSPECTIVE

2012 was a great, if not always the most consistent, year for movies. We’ve seen superhero movies, award season titles, 3D movies for kids, 3D movies for teens & adults, indie surprises and mainstream timebombs. We’ve witnessed the end of a franchise and the beginning of a new one. We’ve seen raunchy comedies about talking teddy bears and imaginative dramas about post-Katrina New Orleans. However, two questions remain about this year in movies: which were the best? Which were the worst? I’m going to give you my top 5 best AND worst movies of the year. Keep in mind: this is my opinion and mine alone. These are the ones that made me stand up and say “This is amazing!” while there are the ones that left me saying, “Why did I choose to see this?”. Which ones were they? Let’s find out!   BEST 5. Dredd (Pete Travis/Lionsgate/R) – You’re probably asking yourself: why is this one of your best? I’ll tell you why. If you started going to your local library and started reading a collection of the original “Judge Dredd” masterworks published by 2000 AD Magazine, then watching the first movie adaptation of the comic (with Sylvester Stallone, in case you forgot) after years of watching it as a kid, then checking out a 3D screening of the second screen incarnation of the character (played with great conviction by Karl Urban) and totally exceed your expectations after...

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Freelancers (Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Forest Whitaker, Robert De Niro) REVIEW

Title: Freelancers Studio/Distributor: Lionsgate/Grindstone Entertainment Group Cast: Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Forest Whitaker, Robert De Niro, Dana Delany, Beau Garrett, Anabelle Acosta, Raeden Garder, Robert Wisdom, Michael McGrady, Dominique DuVernay, Matt Gerald, Michelle Torres, Amin Joseph,  Jeff Chase, Ryan O’Nan, Andre Royo Director: Jessy Terrero Writer: L. Philippe Casseus Plot Synopsis: The son of a slain NYPD officer joins the force, where he falls in with his father’s former partner and a team of rogue cops. Bottom Line: Somehow, there is someone out there who is basically asking for more movies featuring Curtis Jackson, better known by his hip-hop nom de plume “50 Cent”. After delivering two great performances in both 2005’s “Get Rich or Die Tryin'” and 2007’s “Home of the Brave”, the quality of the movies he’s starred in lowered with each movie. Every movie began to become more and more riddled with cliches, wooden acting and every time he came with a movie, it was almost like it was the same movie (“Gun”, “Caught in the Crossfire” & “Blood Out” are just a few examples). However, it looked like he turned a corner with his collaboration with director/actor Mario Van Peebles, the drama “Things Fall Apart” where he went the distance by taking off some pounds of muscle for his role as a football player who’s diagnosed with cancer. He turned in a good performance in...

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