REVIEW: VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN

CAST

James McAvoy (Split)
Daniel Radcliffe (Horns)
Jessica Brown Findlay (Lullaby)
Andrew Scott (Sherlock)
Charles Dance (Ghostbusters)
Freddie Fox (Pride)
Mark Gatiss (Game of Thrones)
Callum Turner (Glue)
Daniel Mays (Byzantium)
Spencer Wilding (Eragon)
Bronson Webb (Pusher)

Daniel Radcliffe in Victor Frankenstein (2015)In London, ambitious medical student Victor Frankenstein attends a circus performance, where he helps save an injured aerialist, Lorelei, by aid of a nameless hunchback enslaved by the circus’ ringleader, who harbors feelings for the girl. Impressed by the hunchback’s vast knowledge of human anatomy, acquired from stolen books, Victor rescues him, drains the cyst on his back that causes his physical abnormality and gives him a harness to improve his posture – he then names him “Igor Straussman” after his roommate who is not often at home. The two then become partners in Victor’s ongoing experiments to create life through artificial means, incurring the wrath of devoutly religious police inspector Roderick Turpin, who views their experiments as sinful.James McAvoy in Victor Frankenstein (2015)When Victor shows Igor his use of electricity to animate eyes, Igor suggests he made mistakes attaching the nerves, leading Victor to ask Igor to perform the surgical parts of his experiment. Victor procures parts from dead animals and makes Igor restore the organs, which Victor secretly uses to create a monstrous chimpanzee-esque creature nicknamed “Gordon”.Igor reunites with Lorelei, now masquerading as the mistress of a closeted homosexual baron, upsetting Victor, who views Lorelei as a distraction. Igor invites Lorelei to a demonstration of their experiment, which goes awry when Gordon escapes and wreaks havoc through the university before being killed by Victor and Igor. Lorelei is horrified by Victor’s experiments and urges Igor to dissuade him from pursuing the matter further, but Igor is reluctant to do so upon learning that Victor is driven by the need to atone for his indirect role in the death of his older brother, Henry, for which Victor’s domineering father blames Victor. Victor is expelled from college for his unorthodox methods, but attracts the attention of his wealthy, arrogant classmate Finnegan, who wants him to create an artificial humanoid creature. Victor and Igor outline a behemoth named “Prometheus”, but Igor’s deepening relationship with Lorelei soon causes a rift between them.Daniel Radcliffe in Victor Frankenstein (2015)Turpin and his men raid Victor’s laboratory, hell-bent on destroying his inventions. When he attacks Victor, Turpin loses a hand and is blinded in one eye. Victor and Igor escape in a carriage sent by Finnegan and are taken to his family’s estate. Turpin is fired from Scotland Yard for not having a warrant to invade Victor’s home. Finnegan provides the scientists with the necessary funds to build Prometheus and offers them laboratory facilities at his family’s estate in Scotland. Igor is mistrustful of Finnegan and disillusioned with Victor. After a falling out, Victor departs for Scotland alone. Finnegan kidnaps and binds Igor, revealing his plans to kill Victor once Prometheus is complete and weaponize his creation. Igor is then thrown into the River Thames to drown, but manages to escape and reunites with Lorelei, who nurses him back to health.James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe in Victor Frankenstein (2015)Igor and Lorelei embark to Finnegan’s estate in order to rescue Victor. Igor finds Victor on the verge of using lightning to animate Prometheus. Victor ignores Igor’s pleas and activates the machine. A power surge overloads the machinery, killing Finnegan. During the ensuing chaos, Turpin unexpectedly arrives, blaming and threatening Victor for his creation. Prometheus suddenly steps forward. Victor is initially ecstatic that the experiment has worked, sharing a brief moment with Prometheus, thinking him to be his resurrected brother Henry. Victor quickly realizes that the experiment has failed: Prometheus has no consciousness and can not talk. The shocked Turpin opens fire on Prometheus, who goes into a rage, killing Turpin and nearly killing Victor. Disillusioned, Victor joins forces with Igor to kill Prometheus by stabbing its two hearts. After regaining consciousness the next morning, Igor reunites with Lorelei, who hands him a letter written to him by Victor, in which Victor apologizes for all the suffering he caused and recognizes Igor was his “greatest creation”. Victor retreats to the Scottish countryside in search of new discoveries.James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe in Victor Frankenstein (2015)If you are wondering what different things can they do for this very familiar story to make it worth watching – they do succeed in giving a fresh perspective – Igor’s The cast is likable and watchable. Daniel Radcliffe is a good actor and his roles since Harry Potter are actually show his range. The transformation from hunchback to Igor is quite an extreme makeover. James McAvoy is a also a very convincing actor and acts obsessed enough. Despite both actors being small sized they can pull off a big action movie. Jessica Brown Findlay of Downton Abbey is a pretty love interest (for Igor no less) and her role isn’t irritating. The first resurrected creature and organs are quite morbidly frightening for what they are. The ending is grand but kind of wonder what did Victor expect once they brought him to life? Anyway it’s not necessary to look to deep into a story like this.

 

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REVIEW: ME BEFORE YOU

CAST

Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones)
Sam Claflin (The Quiet Ones)
Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who)
Charles Dance (Ghostbusters)
Janet McTeer (Jessica Jones)
Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter)
Brendan Coyle (Downton Abby)
Vanessa Kirby (The Crown)
Ben Lloyd-Hughes (Divergent)
Steve Peacocke (Home and Away)
Samantha Spiro (Grandma’s House)
Joanna Lumley (THe Wolf of Wall Street)

Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)26-year-old Louisa Clark (Emilia Clarke) is a happy, outgoing woman who lives with and supports her working-class family. After losing her job at a local cafe, she is hired as the caregiver of Will Traynor (Sam Claflin), a former successful banker and once active young man who became paralyzed after being involved in a motorcycle accident two years prior. Louisa has no experience but Will’s mother believes her cheery personality will help lift his spirits. Will only spends time with Nathan, his nurse, who assists with his care, exercise and movement and knows that he will never regain use of his body due to the damage to his spinal cord.Cynical and depressed because he can no longer live an active life, Will initially reacts coldly to Louisa’s upbeat demeanor and treats her with contempt. After two weeks, Will has a visit from his former best friend Rupert and ex-girlfriend Alicia who reveal that they are engaged. Will manages to smash all the photographs on his dresser in anger and indignation, which Louisa tries to repair the next day, leading to a verbal altercation during which Louisa chastises him for “being an arse”. The next day, Will asks Louisa to watch a film with subtitles with him, and she accepts. The two begin to bond and eventually become close friends. Louisa and Will continue to talk daily; she learns that he is cultured and worldly, having traveled extensively. In contrast, her life so far has been simple, without many interests or hobbies or travel away from home. Her long-term boyfriend, Patrick (Matthew Lewis), is training to take part in a Viking triathlon in Norway, a hobby that he often chooses over spending time with her. Will urges Louisa to broaden her horizons and tells her that it’s her responsibility to live life as fully as possible.Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)While taking care of him during one of his occasional illnesses, Louisa notices Will’s scarred wrists from a previous suicide attempt. While at work one day, Louisa overhears an argument of Will’s parents and she learns that Will has given his parents six months before checking in to Dignitas in Switzerland for assisted suicide. Will refuses to accept life with a disability that entails dependency, pain and suffering without any hope for recovery of his old self. Louisa then takes it upon herself to change his mind. She organizes various trips and adventures to show Will that life is worth living, despite his disability. Will gradually becomes more communicative and open to her plans. The pair attends the horse-racing, with disastrous consequences and a few days afterwards, goes to a Mozart concert. Will then decides to attend Alicia’s wedding and asks Louisa to accompany him. At the wedding, Louisa and Will enjoy offending the straight-laced guests. Louisa learns from the bride’s godmother that she considers Will to be Alicia’s ‘one that got away’.Sam Claflin and Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)Will joins Louisa’s family for dinner on her birthday, where they learn that Louisa’s father had lost his job in a leveraged buyout that happened to have been organized by a younger associate of Will. Shortly thereafter Louisa’s father is offered the head of maintenance job at Stortfold Castle which belongs to Will’s family and Louisa realizes that Will is trying to help her secure her freedom from her family. Gradually they develop strong feelings for one another, which makes Patrick jealous and causes problems in Louisa’s long-standing relationship, leading to their break-up.Sam Claflin and Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)During a luxurious trip to the island of Mauritius together, undertaken after another bout with pneumonia and with help from Will’s nurse, Will informs Louisa that he still intends to follow through with the euthanasia. He wants her to live a full life instead of “half a life” with him. He says their time together has been special, but he cannot bear to live in a wheelchair. He asks her to accompany him to Switzerland to be with him through his last moments. Heartbroken, she informs Will’s parents upon arrival in London that she is quitting immediately and travels back to her home by bus. She does not speak to Will for the days that follow. However, at home, Louisa’s father convinces her to go to Will in Switzerland. She finds out that he has already left for Switzerland, and decides to go to Switzerland herself to be with Will in his final moments. A few weeks after Will’s death, sitting in his favorite cafe in Paris, she rereads the letter Will left for her. In it he encourages her to seek out a specific perfume shop and ends off the letter with ‘just live’, which she can afford to do because he has left her enough money to follow her dreams.Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)The criticism of the movie that it depicts a life with profound disability as almost worthless is completely mistaken. The movie depicts William’s life as worthwhile and precious. It is William’s own judgment that his life cannot go on as it is, and that he would prefer to die.  With regard to this, the movie does tend to downplay the pain and suffering that William experiences. Instead it focuses on the good times and precious moments he spends with Lou. A must see for fans of Emilia Clarke.

REVIEW: IRONCLAD

CAST

James Purefoy (Solomon Kane)
Brian Cox (Rise of The Planet of The Apes)
Derek Jacobi (Cinderella)
Kate Mara (Fantastic Four)
Paul Giamatti (Sideways)
Charles Dance (Game of Thrones)
Jason Flemyng (From Hell)
Jamie Foreman (Sleepy Hollow)
Mackenzie Crook (City of Ember)
Vladimir Kulich (Angel)

Jason Flemyng in Ironclad (2011)A prologue describes how the barons of England, aided by the Knights Templar, fought against tyrannical King John in a war that lasted more than three years. It ended with the King signing the Magna Carta, a document granting rights to all English freemen. King John regrets succumbing to the pressure of the barons to sign the Magna Carta. Soon after, he hires an army of pagan Danish mercenaries under the leadership of a warlord, Captain Tiberius, to restore John’s absolute authority over the kingdom, under the presumption that the Pope has agreed to keep Christian missionaries out of their lands in Denmark.Brian Cox and Paul Giamatti in Ironclad (2011)The Abbot Marcus leads three Templar knights (who have taken vows of silence) on a pilgrimage to Canterbury and they take shelter from the rain at Darnay Castle. One of the knights, Thomas Marshall, is assured by the abbot that Marshall’s release from the Templar Order will be sought at Canterbury. By morning, King John arrives at the castle with his army and mercenaries. Baron Darnay signed the Magna Carta and in retribution John orders him hanged. The Abbot attempts to intervene and the King orders that the abbot’s tongue be cut off. Marshall and the two other knights fight the Danes, during which Marshall escapes the castle on horseback carrying the abbot; the two knights left behind are slain. The abbot dies before night of his wound, and Marshall breaks his vow of silence to swear that his sacrifice will not be in vain.Paul Giamatti in Ironclad (2011)Once he has reached Canterbury, Marshall meets with Archbishop Langton, the author of the Magna Carta, and Baron William d’Aubigny, a former soldier turned wool merchant. Langton reveals that the Pope has sided with King John and that he himself is to be excommunicated for writing the Magna Carta. The three men agree that John must be stopped, and that the place to do so is Rochester Castle, the seat of Baron Cornhill and a strategic stronghold that controls southern England and allows access to London and the rest of the country.Kate Mara in Ironclad (2011)Aubigny persuades three of his men to join him, including his squire, Guy, and a petty criminal named Jedediah, but a fourth turns down the baron’s call to arms. A party of seven finally leaves for Rochester where, on arriving, they discover several Danish mercenaries have already claimed the castle; the fourth man had betrayed them to the king. Aubigny’s party fights and kills the Danes, and then claim Rochester Castle in the name of the rebellion, much to the displeasure of Cornhill. When John’s army finally arrives and lays siege to Rochester, the garrison holds fast and manages to beat the initial Danish assault. In the aftermath, Aubigny offers his men leave if they wish; none accept. A second assault sees the Danes’ siege tower destroyed by a trebuchet crafted by the defenders from within the castle. John’s forces then attempt to starve out the defenders. The Archbishop is informed that Prince Louis is biding his time in France and negotiating with John, and sets off in haste to expedite affairs. As the season turns to winter, the hunger of the castle’s occupants continue; Marshall leaves the castle under cover of night and then returns ahead of his pursuers with food stolen from the Danish camp. The castle morale is bolstered by Marshall’s act and he gives in to the advances of Cornhill’s young wife Isabel, breaking his Templar vows.Vladimir Kulich as Tiberius, Paul Giamatti as King John in Ironclad.The Danish leader, Tiberius, threatened by John to take the castle or risk the King reneging on their bargain, adopts a different approach in his next attack and manages to sneak a small force of men over the walls before dawn to open the castle gates from within. Guy discovers the infiltrators and sounds the alarm, but it is too late. Tiberius leads the charge into the castle grounds while his Danes slaughter the garrison. During the chaos, d’Aubigny is wounded and left behind in the chaos of the retreat. Marshall recovers in time to don his knight’s battle armour and charge the Danes on his war-horse, buying time for the survivors to pull back to the keep. Aubigny is dragged before the King and forced to watch as the hands of two prisoners are chopped off. After a defiant verbal exchange with John, he is subjected to the same fate and then hurled by the castle trebuchet into a keep wall. Cornhill tries to surrender but is stopped; he goes instead upstairs to his bedroom and hangs himself. John’s engineers have been preparing a mine under the keep’s foundation, and they have a herd of pigs brought and put in the mine which is then stoked, set afire and the animal fat used to damage the keep’s foundation, causing it to collapse; as the keep’s walls come down, the final assault begins.IRONCLADThe last defenders are killed except Guy, Isabel and Marshall, the latter knocked unconscious by falling rubble. Guy goes out to die fighting where he encounters Tiberius and is almost killed, until a recovered Marshall intervenes. Tiberius challenges Marshall to single combat, and Marshall triumphs after a long and savage duel. Horns are heard in the distance as the combined English rebel and French army arrives at last, and John and the remaining Danes disperse in panic. Marshall meets Prince Louis and Archbishop Langton at the castle gates; the latter tells him that he is now free of the Templar Order. Acknowledging England’s new king with a nod, Marshall rides off with Isabel, while Guy tells his dead baron that “We held”. The epilogue describes King John’s death during his retreat and the reconstruction of Rochester Castle, and how it, like the Magna Carta, still stands.Overall its not a classic nor will it win awards, but for a couple of hours action based escapism it is certainly worth the effort of watching and is far superior to a number of bigger budget Hollywood contemporaries.

REVIEW: DRACULA UNTOLD

CAST

Luke Evans(the Hobbit)
Dominc Cooper (Agent Carter)
Sarah Gadon (The Amazing Spider-Man 2)
Art Parkinson (Game of Thrones)
Charles Dance (Last Action Hero)
Paul Kaye (Pan)
Ronan Vibert (Hex)

In the Middle Ages, Vlad Tepes (Luke Evans) is the Prince of Wallachia and Transylvania. As a child, he was a princely hostage of the Ottoman Empire and was trained to be a soldier in the Sultan’s elite Janissary corps, where he became their most feared warrior. He was called Vlad the Impaler after slaughtering thousands by impaling them on spears. Eventually sickened by his acts, he put aside his past and returned to rule his domains in peace. One day in the forest, Vlad and his soldiers discover a helmet in a stream. Fearing that an Ottoman scouting party is preparing the way for invasion, they follow the stream to a high mountain cave called Broken Tooth Mountain. Upon entering the cave, they discover the ground of the cave is carpeted in crushed bone; and they are attacked in the dark by an unknown creature (Charles Dance) with shining red eyes, as well as inhuman speed and strength. While his men are killed, Vlad cuts the creature of the cave with his sword before being thrown to the ground. The blood on the sword he used to cut the creature dissolves when exposed to sunlight, and the creature does not pursue Vlad into the sunlight at the mouth of the cave. Returning to his castle, Vlad learns from a local monk that the creature is a vampire, who was once a man who summoned a demon from the depths of hell and made a pact with it for dark powers before being tricked by the demon and cursed to remain in the cave forever until he is released by someone who drinks his blood, then drinks the blood of a human. The person is welcome to share his power in exchange for the freedom to escape the cave.

The next day, as Vlad celebrates an Easter feast with his wife Mirena (Sarah Gadon), his son Ingeras (Art Parkinson), and his subjects, an Ottoman contingent arrives unexpectedly at the castle. Vlad offers them the usual tribute payment of silver coins, but the emissary notes that a battalion of Ottoman scouts has gone missing, implying that Vlad has had them killed. Vlad professes that he had not killed them. The emissary demands an additional tribute of 1,000 boys to be trained as Janissaries, through the devşirme system. Vlad refuses, but his army is small and no match for the Turks. Mirena believes that, because of Vlad and Mehmed’s (Dominic Cooper) history together as children, being close like brothers, if he were to ask, Mehmed would show him mercy. He approaches Mehmed II and asks him not to take the country’s boys. When that fails, he offers himself in place of the boys; but the Sultan refuses and demands Vlad’s son in addition. The Sultan sends the emissary to bring Vlad’s son. Vlad has an argument with his wife, as he is sending his son to meet the emissary and Ottoman soldiers. Vlad tells his wife to trust him before leaving his wife and son and going to meet the emissary and the soldiers alone. He is unarmed; but his son, afraid for him, runs to him, takes his hand, and tells his father that he is ready to join the Sultan’s army. As Vlad approaches the Turks, the emissary, smiling, tells Vlad that he thought there would be some kind of difficulty. Vlad tells his son to run back to his mother, then takes the emissary’s sword and kills him and his small entourage of soldiers.

Knowing his actions will lead to war, Vlad returns to the Broken Tooth Mountain cave to seek help from the vampire. Once he is inside, the vampire asks Vlad why he returned. Vlad replies, saying he needs the power of the vampire so that he can defeat the Ottoman army. The vampire tells him there are consequences and offers him some of his blood, which will temporarily give Vlad the powers of a vampire. If he resists the intense urge to drink human blood for three days, he will turn back into a human. Otherwise, he will remain a vampire forever and will one day be called upon to help his maker. Vlad accepts the offer and drinks the vampire’s blood, going through a painful and deathlike experience as he transforms.

Waking up in the forest afterwards, Vlad discovers he has been granted heightened senses, inhuman strength and speed, and the ability to transform into a flock of bats; but his skin slowly burns in direct sunlight. When he returns to Castle Dracula, the Ottoman army attacks, but Vlad single-handedly kills them all. He then sends most of the castle’s subjects to Cozia Monastery, which is situated on the edge of a mountain, as a better base for safety. During the journey, Mirena learns of Vlad’s curse as she sees Vlad holding silver to keep himself weak when near his people to avoid revealing his condition to them or attack them for blood. After Vlad promises he will resist human blood, she accepts that he will regain his mortality once the Ottomans are defeated. A Romani named Shkelgim, who knows Vlad is a vampire, proclaims himself as his servant and offers his own blood; but Vlad resists. As they near the monastery, the Valahs are ambushed by Ottoman soldiers; and, while Vlad and his men successfully repel them, Vlad’s sudden increased strength arouses suspicion among his subjects. The next day at the monastery, a monk learns of the curse and leads the Prince’s subjects to turn on Vlad, trapping him in a burning building in the sunlight. Black smoke blocks out the sun, allowing an outraged Vlad to escape the fire, and he angrily reveals that he became a vampire for the sole purpose of protecting his people from the Ottoman suzerainty. Before he acts out against them, Mirena stops him and calms him down.

That night, the Ottoman army marches on the monastery. Vlad commands an enormous swarm of bats to repel them; however, the soldiers are actually a decoy force, allowing a handful of Turks to infiltrate the monastery, kill many of the inhabitants and kidnap Ingeras. Mirena tries to defend her son, and falls from the edge of the monastery wall. Dying, Mirena pleads with Vlad to drink her blood before the sun rises to give him the strength to save their son. Vlad reluctantly drinks her blood, triggering his final transformation into a full-blooded vampire and granting him even greater powers. Vlad returns to the monastery and turns a small group of survivors and mortally wounded into vampires as well. At the Ottoman army’s camp, Mehmed prepares for a massive invasion of Europe. Vlad and his vampires arrive and easily massacre the terrified Ottoman soldiers, while Vlad himself goes after Mehmed, who is holding Ingeras captive. Aware that vampires are weakened by silver, Mehmed has lined the floor of his tent with silver coins, reducing Vlad’s strength and speed, and impairing his vision, and fights Vlad with a silver sword. He overpowers Vlad and prepares to impale his heart with a wooden stake, but Vlad turns into a flock of bats and evades him. Taking the name “Dracula, Son of the Devil,” he kills Mehmed with the stake and drinks his blood, fully succumbed to the savagery of his vampiric condition.

As they leave Mehmed’s tent, Dracula and Ingeras are confronted by the other vampires, who demand that his son be killed because he is human. The monk who had previously led the Valahs against Vlad appears and keeps the vampires at bay with a Christian cross. When one of the vampires attempts to kill Ingeras, Dracula impales him with a spear as a warning to the others not to harm his son. Dracula orders the monk to take Ingeras away, then uses his power to clear the black clouds in the sky. The sunlight burns the vampires into dust, while Dracula collapses into a charred corpse. With Vlad presumed dead and Europe saved from the Ottoman invasion, Ingeras is crowned the new Prince of Wallachia. However, Shkelgim secretly takes Dracula into a nearby tent and revives him with his blood.

In the present day, Vlad meets a woman named Mina, who strikingly resembles Mirena, in the streets of a modern city (London), and they have a conversation about a line of poetry they have in common. The vampire who cursed Vlad, now healed, in a more human form, and still alive, watches them from afar and follows them, and anticipates what he has planned for Dracula in the future, saying, “Let the games begin.”

It’s a film with some great effects, has a charismatic lead with Luke Evans and when added to a great performance by Dominic Cooper as the Sultan Mehmed all round gave a film that was quite enjoyable.

 

 

REVIEW: PRIDE & PREJUDICE & ZOMBIES

CAST

Lily James (Cinderella)
Sam Riley (Maleficent)
Jack Huston (American Hustle)
Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows)
Ellie Bamber (The Falling)
Millie Brady (Legend)
Suki Waterhouse (Insurgent)
Douglas Booth (LOL)
Sally Phillips (Bridget Jone’s Baby)
Charles Dance (Dracula Untold)
Jack Huston (The Longest ride)
Lena Headey (Game of Thrones)
Matt Smith (Terminator Genisys)
Emma Greenwell (Dare To be Wild)
Aisling Loftus (Mr. Selfridge)

In 19th century England, Colonel Darcy (Sam Riley) travels to the home of a wealthy family to investigate rumors of a newly infected zombie. He arrives at the home and sits with the family before taking out a small vial containing carrion flies as a means to detect the undead. When the flies land on the house’s patriarch, Darcy kills him. Assured that no one else could have been infected, he leaves. One of the young girls in the house retreats upstairs to check on the niece of the recently dispatched zombie. She discovers the niece devouring a servant; the niece then proceeds to attack her. The Bennet sisters—Elizabeth (Lily James), Jane (Bella Heathcote), Kitty (Suki Waterhouse), Lydia (Ellie Bamber), and Mary (Millie Brady)—have all been sent to China by their father (Charles Dance) to learn in the art of weaponry and martial arts. Mrs. Bennet (Sally Phillips) wants her daughters to be married off to wealthy suitors. As it turns out, the Bingley family has moved in nearby and are throwing a ball, wherein Mrs. Bennet hopes that the young and handsome Mr. Bingley (Douglas Booth) will win over one of her girls. Elizabeth, on the other hand, doesn’t want to seek a husband.
The Bennets attend the ball. Bingley instantly sets his eyes on Jane. When Elizabeth overhears a disparaging comment about herself from Mr. Darcy, she walks outside tearfully and encounters Mrs. Featherstone (Dolly Wells), now a zombie. Before Mrs. Featherstone can converse with Elizabeth, she is killed by Darcy. A horde of zombies then attack the party, prompting the Bennet sisters to fight them off. Mr. Darcy instantly becomes smitten with Elizabeth when he witnesses her in combat.

The Bingley sisters invite Jane over for tea at Netherfield. Mrs. Bennet forces her to go on horseback, thinking she will be invited to stay overnight due the oncoming rainstorm. While on the ride, Jane encounters a zombie and fires her gun. The gun backfires leaving a bite-like wound on her hand. She kills it but then spots a zombie woman with her child. Jane hesitates and is attacked by the zombie. At Netherfield, Mr. Darcy orders her confined to her room, in fear that she may have been bitten. While in Jane’s room, Mr. Darcy releases his flies to detect a zombie, but Elizabeth catches each fly with her hand and returns them now dead to Mr. Darcy.

The Bennets are visited by Parson Collins (Matt Smith), who intends to marry one of the sisters. He initially sets his eyes on Jane, though he is told that she is with Mr. Bingley. He then tries to seduce Elizabeth, and proposes to her, but states that she must give up her life as a warrior, something that she adamantly refuses to do. Mr. Collins later decides to settle with Elizabeth’s friend Charlotte (Aisling Loftus).

After Jane recovers, the sisters attend another ball thrown by the Bingleys. There, Elizabeth meets a soldier named Wickham (Jack Huston), who seems to be charming and polite. He tells Elizabeth that he has history with Mr. Darcy and does not wish to further challenge him. Another group of zombies attack the party, resulting in Bingley injuring himself, and Mr. Darcy joining Elizabeth in fighting the horde. Elizabeth travels with Mr. Wickham to the In-Between, an area outside of walled-in London but inside a royal moat, to a church filled with zombies, who feed on pig brains to keep themselves from going completely savage. Mr. Wickham wants Elizabeth to join him in helping the zombies. He also suggests that she run away with him, but she remains conflicted. Elizabeth and Mr. Wickham then meet with Mr. Darcy’s aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh (Lena Headey), a notorious zombie killer with major authority and wealth, to try and persuade her to come to peace with the more “civilized” zombies. Mr. Darcy and Lady Catherine blatantly refuse. When she arrives home, Elizabeth is told that Mr. Darcy has convinced the Bingleys to move away. When Mr. Darcy approaches Elizabeth with a proposal of his own, she expresses her outrage at his actions and fights him in a duel. Mr. Darcy pins her to the ground, but offended by her accusations and hatred towards him, he lets her go and leaves.
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Mr. Darcy writes Elizabeth a letter to apologize for his actions and to state that he separated Jane and Mr. Bingley for fear that Jane only wanted to marry Mr. Bingley for his wealth, having overheard Mrs. Bennet drunkenly mention it. Mr. Darcy also mentions that Mr. Wickham had tried to elope with Darcy’s fifteen-year-old sister for her fortune. Mr. Darcy’s letter states that he is battling zombies in London, and that they have overrun the walled city. Elizabeth is then cornered by Lady Catherine and her bodyguard Wilhelm (Ryan Oliva). Lady Catherine states Mr. Darcy has been intended to marry her sickly daughter, Anne, from their youth and confronts Elizabeth about rumors over Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. When Elizabeth denies it, Lady Catherine instigates a fight between Elizabeth and Wilhelm in place of Lady Catherine who Elizabeth has refused to fight. Elizabeth overpowers Wilhelm. Afterwards, Lady Catherine decides to protect Elizabeth’s family from approaching zombies and takes them to her estate. Elizabeth later finds out that Mr. Wickham ran off with her younger sister, Lydia and decides to go rescue her.

Elizabeth joins Mr. Darcy in London and helps him battle the undead. Mr. Darcy encounters Mr. Wickham at the old church and rescues Lydia in the basement. While fighting Mr. Wickham, Mr. Darcy impales him and reveals a bite mark on his chest, revealing Mr. Wickham has been undead all along. When a horde of zombies, who had been living normally until the pig brains they had been eating were switched with human brains by Mr. Darcy storm the cellar, Mr. Darcy escapes with Lydia.

While heading for the last bridge from London, Mr. Darcy and Mr. Wickham fight once more with Wickham gaining the upper hand. Before Mr. Wickham can kill Mr. Darcy, Elizabeth rides in and chops Wickam’s arm off and knocks him unconscious. Mr. Darcy rides with Elizabeth across the bridge as the army destroys the last remaining bridge to keep the zombies trapped within the In-Between on the inside of the moat. Mr. Darcy is injured in the explosion and is rendered unconscious. Elizabeth tearfully admits her love for him. After Mr. Darcy recovers, he finds Elizabeth and they share their first kiss, agreeing to marry. The two have a joint wedding with Mr. Bingley and Jane, officiated by Mr. Collins.

In a mid-credits scene, the now one-armed Mr. Wickham is leading the zombies toward them, ready for war.Despite mixed reviews for this horror/period drama mash-up based on the bestselling novel of the same name, I for one thoroughly enjoyed it. A romp from start to finish, this isn’t what casual cinema-goers who haven’t read the novel might expect – less zombie apocalypse, more Austen pastiche; the movie crackles with the tension between Sam Riley’s Mr Darcy and Lily James’ almost unbearably desirable Elizabeth Bennett. However, it is arguably ex-Doctor Who and real-life paramour of Lily James, Matt Smith, who pretty much steals every scene he is in; his interplay with James, Riley, and the Bennett paterfamilias (a patrician Charles Dance), as well as his typically bonkers manner, are absolutely delightful, and as Mr Collins, the unfortunate gooseberry in the relationship between Elizabeth and pretty much every man she meets, his performance alone makes this worth watching.

 

 

 

REVIEW: ALIEN 3

CAST

Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Charles S. Dutton (Mimic)
Charles Dance (Game of Thrones)
Brian Glover (An American Werewolf In London)
Ralph Brown (The Crying Game)
Paul McGann (Queen of The Damned)
Danny Webb (Locke)
Lance Henriksen (Hellraiser 8)
Pete Postlethwaite (Solomon Kane)
Holt McCallany (Heroes)

A fire starts aboard the Colonial Marine spaceship Sulaco. The computer launches an escape pod containing Ellen Ripley, the young girl Newt, Hicks, and the damaged android Bishop; all four are in cryonic stasis. Scans of the crew’s cryotubes show an Alien facehugger attached to one of the members. The pod crash-lands on Fiorina “Fury” 161, a foundry facility and penal colony inhabited by male inmates with histories of physical and sexual violence. Inmates recover the pod and its passengers.

Ripley is awakened by Clemens, the prison doctor, who informs her that she is the sole survivor. Ripley is warned by the prison warden, Harold Andrews, that her presence may have disruptive effects. Ripley insists that Clemens perform an autopsy on Newt; he asks what they are looking for in the body of a girl who had obviously drowned. Ripley lies to him that they are investigating a possible case of cholera, but secretly fears that Newt has been impregnated with an alien embryo. Clemens firmly responds by stating that there hasn’t been a case of cholera reported for 200 years. The autopsy is conducted and no embryo is found. A funeral is held for Newt and Hicks and their bodies are cremated in the facility furnace. In another section of the prison, an alien bursts out of the chest of a prison dog named Spike. The Alien kills several members of the colony and returns outcast prisoner Golic to his previously psychopathic state. Ripley re-activates Bishop, who confirms that an Alien came with them to Fiorina in the escape pod. Ripley informs Andrews of her encounters with the Aliens and suggests everyone work together to hunt down and kill it. Andrews, highly skeptical, does not believe her story, but explains that the facility has no weapons; their only hope is the rescue ship being sent for Ripley by the Weyland-Yutani Corporation.

The Alien surprises Ripley and Clemens in the prison infirmary, whereupon it kills Clemens. It examines Ripley, but spares her and retreats. Andrews orders Aaron to take her back to the infirmary, but he is (ironically) ambushed and killed by the Alien. Ripley rallies the inmates and proposes they pour flammable toxic waste into the ventilation system and ignite it to flush out the Alien. However, the Alien’s intervention causes an explosion and several inmates are killed. With Aaron’s help, Ripley, who has not been feeling well this whole time, scans herself using the escape pod’s medical equipment and discovers the embryo of an Alien Queen growing inside her. She also discovers that Weyland-Yutani hopes to turn the Queen embryo and the adult Alien into biological weapon.

Deducing that the Alien will not kill her because of the embryo she carries, Ripley begs Dillon to kill her; he agrees only if she helps the inmates kill the adult creature first. They form a plan to lure the creature into the foundry’s molding facility, trap it via a series of closing doors, and drown it in molten lead. The bait-and-chase plan results in the death of every prisoner except Morse and Dillon. Dillon remains in the mold to distract the Alien, allowing it to tear him apart as Morse pours the molten lead onto them. The Alien is covered in molten metal but escapes the mold; Ripley activates the fire sprinklers, causing the Alien’s exoskeleton to cool rapidly and shatter, killing it.

The Weyland–Yutani commando team arrives, including a man who looks identical to Bishop and explains that he is Bishop’s creator. He tries to persuade Ripley to undergo surgery to remove the Queen embryo, which he claims will be destroyed. Knowing he is lying, Ripley refuses and steps back onto a mobile platform, which Morse positions over the furnace. The Weyland–Yutani team shoot Morse in the leg in a late effort to stop him; Aaron strikes the man with a wrench and is shot dead. The commando team begs Ripley to let them have the “magnificent specimen” but their efforts are in vain. Ripley throws herself into the furnace, just as the infant Alien Queen begins to erupt from her chest. Ripley grabs it to prevent it from escaping as they both fall into the furnace to their deaths. The facility is closed and the only surviving inmate, Morse, is led away.Panned by many for it’s undoubtedly bleak tone, butchered by the studio so the film didn’t make cinematic sense, and unappreciated at the time by most of the public, Alien 3 has gone on to be re-evaluated by many as, if not a masterpiece, at least a very fine example of the sci fi genre. It has now been re-edited (not by Fincher who has disowned the film) to include a whole host of originally discarded scenes that flesh out the story. The wonderful sunset bathed beach scenes with Ripley covered in oil and almost dead, saved by doctor Charles Dance, are beautifully shot. The dead bull scene is back and is much more powerful than the one it replaces. A whole plot-line regarding an inmate’s relationship with the Monster is reintroduced to great effect. This is a major reworking of the film and not just at weak here and there. Cast members were hired again to re-voice scenes for the restoration and to increase sound quality in some areas. The running time is increased by about 25 minutes.

REVIEW: ST. GEORGES DAY

 

CAST

Charles Dance (Game of Thrones)
Craig Fairbrass (Cliffhanger)
Vincent Regan (300)
Frank Harper (This Is England)
Luke Treadaway (Unbroken)
Neil Maskell (Kill List)
Nick Moran (After Death)
Dexter Fletcher (Kick-Ass)
Sean Pertwee (Gotham )
Jamie Forman (Layer Cake)
Angela Gots (Ice)
Keeley Hazell (Horrible Bosses 2)
Ashley Walters (Bullet Boy)

Infamous cousins Micky Mannock (Frank Harper) and Ray Collishaw (Craig Fairbrass) run London’s top firm. But their supremacy in the capital’s gangster underworld is threatened when they lose a drug shipment belonging to the Russian Mafia. The stakes could not be higher as they plan an audacious heist in Berlin. If successful, this could pay off their debts and set them up for life. Hiding out among an English super-firm gearing up for a massive showdown as the 3 Lions play Germany on St. George’s Day, their gang have just one shot at the job. But with the cops and Russians on their trail, the last thing they need is a grass in the ranks.I thought this was an all good Brit Gangster flick, Frank Harper did a great job of his first time directorial debut, and some of the camera shots were great. I think Frank Harper could defo direct some more good things, and look forward to them!. A decent British Gangster thriller for a Saturday night.