REVIEW: SECRET IN THEIR EYES (2015)

Starring

Chiwetel Ejiofor (Serenity)
Nicole Kidman (To Die For)
Julia Roberts (Mirror Mirror)
Dean Norris (Breaking Bad)
Michael Kelly (Now You See Me)
Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)
Zoe Graham (Boyhood)
Lyndon Smith (The Forger)
Joe Cole (Green Room)
Donald Patrick Harvey (Taken 3)
Mark Famiglietti (Flashforward)
Ross Partridge (Amityville: A New Generation)
Noel Gugliemi (The Fast and The Furious)

Julia Roberts in Secret in Their Eyes (2015)In 2002, shortly after 9/11, Ray Kasten (Ejiofor), a counterterrorism agent for the FBI, and his friend Jessica “Jess” Cobb (Roberts), an investigator for the Los Angeles district attorney’s office, meet new ADA Claire Sloan (Kidman). Jess and Ray receive a call about an unknown female body found in a dumpster near a local mosque, which Ray has been investigating for possible terrorist links. At the crime scene, both are devastated to discover that the victim is Jess’s 18-year-old daughter, Carolyn (Zoe Graham), whose body has been bleached inside and out to destroy DNA evidence of both rape and murder.Chiwetel Ejiofor and Dean Norris in Secret in Their Eyes (2015)Ray, who was supposed to meet Carolyn to plan a surprise party for Jess, feels responsible for what happened to her, while Jess feels the increasing need to move out of the city. While helping Jess pack, Ray notices pictures from a picnic thrown for law enforcement in which a young man is seen staring at Carolyn. Ray scans the photo and matches it to Anzor Marzin (Cole), who is an informant in the terrorism probe. D.A. Martin Morales (Molina) is reluctant to go after Marzin, fearing it would compromise the terrorism investigation. Officer Reggie Siefert (Kelly) brings in a suspect named Aban Ghazala (Amir Malaklou), who Ray realizes is not the killer.Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Kelly in Secret in Their Eyes (2015)Ray forces Siefert to admit that he set up Ghazala as a patsy to protect Marzin. Ray and Detective Bumpy Willis (Norris) track down and arrest Marzin at Dodger Stadium. Claire argues with Ray over his methods while seemingly defending Marzin, saying he wasn’t capable of the crime. Claire taunts Marzin, provoking him to expose himself and punch her, saying he’s going to give Claire what Carolyn got. Ray beats Marzin, which leads to Morales ordering Marzin released. As Marzin gloats, an enraged Ray suggests they kill him before he gets away, but Jess refuses to go that route, saying death would be too easy on him. After his release, the police find Marzin’s van, but Siefert burns it to destroy the evidence against Marzin.Chiwetel Ejiofor in Secret in Their Eyes (2015)Thirteen years later, Ray, now head of security for the New York Mets, returns to Los Angeles and reunites with Claire, now the D.A. Jess, who has been asocial since the loss of her daughter, is Claire’s top investigator. Ray has found a man named Clay Beckwith (Cole), who he believes is Marzin living under an alias. The investigation eventually leads to a shootout with Beckwith in which Siefert is killed. Beckwith and his men are arrested, but Jess insists that Beckwith is not Marzin. When Ray and Claire pay a visit to Jess’s isolated farmhouse, she confesses that she found and killed Marzin thirteen years previously, shortly after Ray left Los Angeles. Later, Ray follows Jess into her barn and discovers that Marzin is actually alive, having been imprisoned in a cage for over a decade. Marzin begs Ray to ask Jess to talk to him. Ray pulls out his gun and leaves it with Jess as he goes outside and starts digging a grave. Ray hears Jess shooting Marzin. The two meet each other with a sense of relief while Claire officially closes Carolyn’s case.Nicole Kidman in Secret in Their Eyes (2015)I am certainly not saying that the original might not be much better. I have it on my list to watch but in my opinion, if you like thrillers and movies with some twists and turns and want to be entertained I recommend giving it a chance.

 

REVIEW: TO DIE FOR

CAST

Nicole Kidman (Paddignton)
Matt Dillon (Crash)
Joaquin Phoenix (Gladiator)
Casey Affleck (Gone Baby Gone)
Illeana Douglas (Ghost World)
Dan Hedaya (Commando)
Alison Folland (The Fighter)
Wayne Knight (3rd Rock From The Sun)
Kurtwood Smith (That 70s Show)
Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men)
Susan Taylor (Heat)
David Cronenberg (Jason X)
Tamara Gorski (Hercules: TLJ)
Michael Rispoli (Kick-Ass)
Rain Phoenix (Hitch)
George Segal (2012)

To-Die-For-movie-1080p-HD-free-downloadSuzanne Stone (Nicole Kidman) dreams of being a world-famous news anchor. To that end, she marries Larry Maretto (Matt Dillon), due to mutual attraction and because she believes his family business will keep her financially comfortable, and she starts attempting to climb the network news ladder, beginning as a meteorologist at a local cable station, WWEN.gx5X7KK3Uw2A81xuYxP4yXKHTkZWhen Larry starts asking her to take time off from her career to start a family, she immediately begins plotting to get rid of him. To this end, she uses the subjects of her TV documentary, a high school project called “Teens Speak Out”, and seduces one of her students, Jimmy Emmett (Joaquin Phoenix), and manipulates him and his friends, delinquent Russell Hines (Casey Affleck) and shy Lydia Mertz (Alison Folland), into killing Larry. With the help of Russell and Lydia, Jimmy ultimately commits the murder.2915D18500000578-3097590-On_the_big_screen_The_case_inspired_the_1995_movie_To_Die_For_In-a-58_1432652312603Though Larry’s death is ruled a burglary-murder, the police begin investigating when they stumble across a “Teens Speak Out” video of Suzanne at Jimmy’s school in which Jimmy discreetly hints at a relationship with Suzanne, provided by her boss, Ed Grant (Wayne Knight). Jimmy, Russell and Lydia are arrested. Lydia makes a deal with the police to converse with Suzanne while wearing a wiretap, and Suzanne unwittingly reveals her hand in the murder. To-Die-For

Despite this undeniable proof of Suzanne’s guilt, however, she is acquitted in court, on the basis that the police had resorted to entrapment, and walks free. Suzanne basks in the media spotlight as she talks to reporters about Larry’s death, and fabricates a story about her husband being a drug addict and being murdered by Jimmy and Russell as his dealers. Jimmy and Russell are sentenced to life in prison, though Russell appeals against his sentence and receives sixteen years instead, while Lydia is released on probation for her cooperation.MSDTODI EC006Larry’s father, Joe (Dan Hedaya), sees Suzanne lying about Larry on television and realizes that Suzanne was behind his son’s murder. He then uses his Mafia connections to have her murdered. The hitman (David Cronenberg) lures Suzanne away from her home by pretending to be interested in broadcasting her life story, kills her, and then buries her under a frozen lake. Lydia gains national attention by telling her side of the story in a television interview, becoming a celebrity. Larry’s sister, Janice (Illeana Douglas), practices her figure skating on the frozen lake where Suzanne’s corpse is hidden.563823627_640To Die For is entertaining from beginning to end, and the ending is especially satisfying. It’s funny in ways that almost make you feel a little guilty for laughing.

 

25 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS REVIEW: PADDINGTON

CAST

Ben Whishaw (Skyfall)
Hugh Bonneville (Downtown Abbey)
Sally Hawkins (Godzilla)
Madeleine Harris (The White Queen)
Nicole Kidman (The Others)
Julie Walters (Brooklyn)
Imelda Staunton (Maleficent)
Michael Gambon (Harry Potter)
Matt Lucas (Alice In Wonderland)
Peter Capaldi (Doctor Who)
Jim Broadbent (Cloud Atlas)
Alice Lowe (Prevenge)

In the deep jungles of darkest Peru, British geographer Montgomery Clyde happens upon a previously unknown species of bear. He is about to shoot it to take back a specimen to England when another bear playfully takes his gun away. He learns that this family of bears is intelligent and can learn English, and that they have a deep appetite for marmalade. He names them Lucy and Pastuzo. As he departs, he throws his hat to Pastuzo and tells the bears that they are always welcome should they wish to go to London.Several years later, the two bears are living in harmony with their nephew when an earthquake strikes their home, forcing them to seek shelter underground. Distracted and upset at the loss of his home, Pastuzo is unable to reach the shelter in time. He is presumed dead, with his hat being found the next day by his nephew. Aunt Lucy encourages her nephew to go and find solace in London, and stows him away on a cargo ship, after which she says she will move into the Home for Retired Bears.The young bear reaches London, but fails to find a home. He is taken in briefly by the Brown family. Mary Brown, the mother and a story illustrator, names him Paddington, after the station where they found him. Henry Brown, the father and a devoted risk analyst, who doesn’t believe a word of why he’s here, is adamant that Paddington stay only one night while they find a place for him to live permanently. Paddington causes a series of accidents across the house, further isolating himself from the Browns.Paddington thinks he can find a home with the explorer who found his aunt and uncle, but does not know his name. Mrs. Brown takes Paddington to Mr. Gruber, an antique shop owner who discovers that the hat bears the stamp of the Geographers Guild, but the Guild says that it never sent a member to explore darkest Peru. With the help of Mr. Brown, who refuses to let the family help him, Paddington infiltrates the Geographers Guild archives and discovers an expedition to Peru was undertaken by Montgomery Clyde. He uses the city’s phone books to track the addresses of all the “M Clyde”s in London.Meanwhile, the sadistic museum taxidermist Director Millicent Clyde, later revealed to be the explorer’s daughter, captures, kills, and stuffs exotic animals to house in the Natural History Museum. When she becomes aware of Paddington, she immediately sets out to hunt him down. The Brown family departs for the day, leaving Paddington home alone. Scheming with the Browns’ nosy neighbor Mr. Curry who is in love with her, Millicent sneaks in and attempts to capture Paddington; he manages to defend himself, but inadvertently starts a fire in the kitchen in the process. Disbelieving Paddington’s statement of Millicent’s capture attempt, the Browns, mainly Henry, state that he must move into a new home as soon as possible.Feeling unwanted at the Browns, Paddington leaves and attempts to track down Montgomery Clyde himself. He finally locates the house, only to learn that Clyde passed away years ago, and that Millicent resents her father for losing his job and membership with the museum; out of a change of heart, he refused to bring a valuable Peruvian bear specimen home, even though it would have made his family wealthy. Millicent is determined to succeed where her father failed and capture a Peruvian bear so she can become rich and famous herself. She tranquilizes Paddington and prepares to stuff him, but when Mr. Curry discovers her true intentions, he informs the Brown family and they rush to save Paddington. They rescue him, and Paddington subdues Millicent by throwing at her a marmalade sandwich his uncle left in his hat for emergencies, which attracts a huge flock of pigeons, distracting her, as family relative and housekeeper Mrs. Bird opens a roof hatch and inadvertently pushes her off the roof, trapping her on a flagpole.In the aftermath, the Browns adopt Paddington into their family and Millicent is sentenced to community service at the petting zoo her father opened after he lost his job. Paddington writes to Aunt Lucy saying he is happy and has finally found a home.Paddington is truly hilarious and heart-warming with a story that is so rich and compelling. And I would recommend Paddington to anyone.

REVIEW: AQUAMAN

Starring

Jason Momoa (Game of Thrones)
Amber Heard (Machete Kills)
Willem Dafoe (The Great Wall)
Patrick Wilson (The Conjuring)
Dolph Lundgren (Arrow)
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Baywatch)
Nicole Kidman (The Paperboy)
Temuera Morrison (Green Lantern)
Ludi Lin (Power Rangers)
Randall Park (Ant-Man and The Wasp)
Graham McTavish (The Hobbit)
Michael Beach (Third Watch)
Djimon Hounsou (Shazam!)
Julie Andrews (Mary Poppins)
John Rhys-Davies (Lord of The Rings)
Leigh Whannell (The Bye Bye Man)
Natalia Safran (Hours)
Patrick Cox (2 Broke Girls)

Jason Momoa in Aquaman (2018)In 1985 Maine, lighthouse keeper Thomas Curry rescues Atlanna, the queen of the underwater nation of Atlantis, during a storm. They eventually fall in love and have a son named Arthur, who is born with the power to communicate with marine lifeforms. Atlanna is forced to abandon her family and return to Atlantis, entrusting to her advisor, Nuidis Vulko, with the mission of training Arthur. Under Vulko’s guidance, Arthur becomes a skilled warrior but rejects Atlantis upon learning that Atlanna was executed for having a half-breed son.Jason Momoa and Patrick Wilson in Aquaman (2018)In the present, several months after Steppenwolf’s invasion,[N 1] Arthur confronts a group of pirates attempting to hijack a Russian Naval Akula-class submarine. Their leader, Jesse Kane, dies during the confrontation while his son, David, vows revenge. Meanwhile Orm, King of Atlantis and Arthur’s half-brother, attempts to convince King Nereus of Xebel to help him unite Atlantis and attack the surface world for harming the oceans. Nereus points out that if Orm succeeds in uniting Atlantis he will receive the title of Ocean Master, commander of the most powerful force on the planet. Their meeting is interrupted when a second Russian Akula submarine attacks, in retaliation for the previous submarine’s sinking. Orm succeeds in destroying it and the attack convinces Nereus to join forces with Orm to defend the oceans.Jason Momoa in Aquaman (2018)He swears allegiance to Orm’s cause, but his daughter Mera, who has been betrothed to Orm, refuses to aid them and journeys to the surface to ask Arthur for help, earning his trust by saving Thomas from a tsunami sent by Orm. Arthur reluctantly accompanies Mera to a rendezvous with Vulko, who urges Arthur to find the Trident of Atlan, a magic artifact that once belonged to Atlantis’ first ruler, in order to reclaim his rightful place as king. They are ambushed by Orm’s men and Mera and Vulko escape without having been seen, while Arthur is captured.Amber Heard in Aquaman (2018)Arthur is chained and presented before Orm, who blames Arthur and the surface for Atlanna’s death. He offers Arthur an opportunity to leave forever, but Arthur instead challenges him to a duel in a ring of underwater lava. Orm gains the upper hand and nearly kills Arthur before Mera rescues him. Together, Arthur and Mera journey to the Sahara desert where the trident was forged and unlock a holographic message that leads them to Sicily, Italy, where they retrieve the trident’s coordinates. Meanwhile, Orm meets David, revealing that Orm had hired David to hijack the Russian nuclear submarine, which lead to the retaliation attack on Atlantis, giving Orm cause for war and causing King Nereus to side with him. Orm provides David with a prototype Atlantean battle suit to kill Arthur, imprisons Vulko after revealing knowledge of his betrayal, and coerces the Atlantean Kingdom of the Fishermen to pledge their allegiance to him and his campaign against the surface.Jason Momoa in Aquaman (2018)After modifying Orm’s technology, a fully armored David rechristens himself as Black Manta and ambushes Arthur and Mera in Sicily, grievously injuring Arthur before being thrown off a cliff to his apparent death. Mera nurses Arthur’s wounds as they journey to the trident’s whereabouts, and encourages him to embrace his destiny as a hero. Arriving at their destination, Arthur and Mera are attacked by the amphibious monsters called the Trench, but manage to fend them off and reach a wormhole that transports them to an uncharted sea located at the center of the Earth. There, they are unexpectedly reunited with Atlanna, who was sacrificed to the Trench for her crimes but managed to escape and reach the uncharted sea, where she has been stranded ever since.Willem Dafoe, Jason Momoa, and Amber Heard in Aquaman (2018)Arthur faces Karathen, a mythical leviathan and keeper of the trident, and voices his determination to protect both Atlantis and the surface, proving his worth and reclaiming the trident, which grants him control over the seven seas. Orm and his allies lead an army against the crustacean forces of the Kingdom of the Brine with the intent of completing Orm’s surface battle preparations. As Orm declares himself Ocean Master, Arthur and Mera, with the assistance of Karathen and the Trench, intervene and lead an army of marine creatures in a battle against him. Orm’s followers renounce their obedience to him and embrace Arthur as the true king upon learning he wields the trident. Arthur defeats Orm in combat but chooses to spare his life and Orm accepts his fate after discovering Arthur has found and rescued Atlanna. Atlanna returns to the surface to reunite with Thomas while Arthur ascends to the throne with Mera by his side.Jason Momoa in Aquaman (2018)In a mid-credits scene, David is rescued by Dr. Stephen Shin, a scientist and conspiracy theorist obsessed with the Atlanteans, and agrees to lead Shin there in exchange for his help in his revenge on Arthur.)The Movie is so damn cool and is filled with nail biting momemts didn’t expect this from the Dc universe. The trailer was promising Taking the trailer as a consideration of Dc movies the trailers have done very well to hype up the movie but the result of the movie isn’t that good but Aquaman changed it, it’s an amazing movie. It did live up the expectations of fans the way they adore Arthur & Mera’s relationship in comics! Some scenes were quite memorable ( Won’t say them as it’s a non-spoiler review) … Aquaman is a very interesting character he’s capable to do many stuffs you’ll know when you watch the movie he’s badass , Funny a good mixture of a superhero personality! Aquaman is a must watch movie …!

REVIEW: LION

 

Starring

Dev Patel (Slumdog Million)
Rooney Mara (Pan)
David Wenham (Iron Fist)
Nicole Kidman (Australia)
Abhishek Bharate (Love Sonia)
Divian Ladwa (Ant-Man and The Wasp)
Priyanka Bose (Half Ticket)

Rooney Mara and Dev Patel in Lion (2016)

In 1986, Saroo, a five-year-old boy, lives with his elder brother Guddu, his mother and his younger sister in Khandwa, India. Guddu and Saroo steal coal from freight trains to trade for milk and food. One day, Saroo follows his brother to a job and they arrive at a nearby train station, where Saroo decides to stay back and take a nap. Guddu tries to wake him up, but Saroo is too tired. When Guddu does not return, Saroo searches for him and boards a train presuming Guddu is aboard. He falls asleep again in one of the compartments, and wakes up to find the train in motion. After several days, it arrives in faraway Calcutta, where he does not understand the local Bengali language. He stands at a ticket counter and tries to obtain a ticket home, but the attendant does not recognise the name of his village, which Saroo says is “Ganestalay”.[4] He spends the night in the station with some streetchildren, but is then woken up and forced to run when a group of men try to kidnap them.Dev Patel in Lion (2016)Saroo continues to wander around the city before coming across Noor, a seemingly friendly woman who takes him back to her apartment. She tells Saroo that a man named Rama will help him find his way home. Saroo runs away, sensing that Noor and Rama have sinister intentions, and escapes Noor when she chases after him. After two months of living near the Howrah Bridge, Saroo is taken to the police by a young man. Unable to trace his family, they put him in an orphanage. Three months later, Saroo is introduced to Mrs. Sood, who tells him she has placed an advertisement about him in several local newspapers, but no one has responded. She then tells him that an Australian couple is interested in adopting him. She begins to teach Saroo English and he moves to Hobart, Tasmania in 1987, under the care of Sue and John Brierley, where he slowly starts to settle in. A year later, they adopt another boy, Mantosh, who has trouble adjusting to his new home and suffers from rage and self-harm.Dev Patel in Lion (2016)Twenty years later, Saroo, now a young man, moves to Melbourne to study hotel management. He starts a relationship with Lucy, an American student. During a meal with some Indian friends at their home, he comes across jalebi, a delicacy he remembers from his childhood. He confides that he is adopted, and his friends suggest he use Google Earth to search for his hometown in India. Saroo begins his search, but over time disconnects from Lucy, overwhelmed by the thought of emotions his family must have gone through when he was missing.Dev Patel and Priyanka Bose in Lion (2016)Saroo visits Sue, whose health is deteriorating, and learns that she is not infertile, but had chosen to help others in need through adoption, believing that there were already too many people on Earth. Saroo spends a long time searching fruitlessly for his hometown. One evening, while scanning Google Earth, he notices the rock formations where his mother worked, and then finds the area where he lived: the Ganesh Talai neighbourhood of the Khandwa district. He finally tells his adoptive mother about his search, and she fully supports his efforts.Nicole Kidman in Lion (2016)Saroo returns to his hometown, and with the help of a local English speaker, has an emotional reunion with his biological mother and sister. He also learns that Guddu is dead. Saroo’s mother never gave up hope and believed that one day her missing son would return, and never moved away from the village. The film ends with captions about the real Saroo’s return to India in February 2012, including the fact his brother Guddu was killed by a train the same night that they were separated as children. Photos of the real Australian family are shown, as well as footage of Saroo introducing Sue to his biological mother in India, who deeply appreciates Sue’s care for her son. Saroo later learned that he had been mispronouncing his own name, which was actually Sheru, meaning “lion”.Lion is a film that I urge you to go and see because a film like this needs the coverage and its subject matter is something people need to be made more aware of.

 

REVIEW: THE OTHERS

CAST

Nicole Kidman (Stoker)
Fionnula Flanagan (Yes man)
Christopher Eccleston (Elizabeth)
Alakina Mann (Girl With a Pearl Earring)
James Bentley (Imperium: Nero)
Michelle Fairley (Game of Thrones)

Grace Stewart (Nicole Kidman) is a devout Roman Catholic mother who lives with her two young children in a remote country house in the British Crown Dependency of Jersey in the immediate aftermath of World War II. The children, Anne (Alakina Mann) and Nicholas (James Bentley), have an uncommon disease, characterized by photosensitivity, so their lives are structured around a series of complex rules to protect them from inadvertent exposure to sunlight. The arrival of three servants at the house — aging Mrs. Bertha Mills (Fionnula Flanagan), elderly gardener Edmund Tuttle (Eric Sykes), and a mute girl named Lydia (Elaine Cassidy) — coincides with a number of odd events, and Grace begins to fear there are unknown others in the house.

Anne draws pictures of four people she has seen in the house numerous times: a man, woman, a boy called Victor, and an old woman. Grace finds a 19th-century “book of the dead”, an album of mourning portrait photos of deceased family members from a previous generation, with some missing pages. She hears noises in the house. With the servants, she tries hunting down the intruders but cannot find them. She does not believe her daughter has seen the others until she hears the ghosts herself. Convinced that something unholy is in the house, she runs out in the fog in search of the local priest to bless the house. Meanwhile, Mr. Tuttle is covering gravestones under autumn leaves.

Outside, Grace discovers her husband Charles (Christopher Eccleston), whom she thought had been killed in the war, and brings him back to the house. Charles is distant during the short time he spends there, and Mrs. Mills says, “I do not think he knows where he is.” During this time, Grace attacks someone dressed up like her daughter; she is frightened by the face she sees underneath Anne’s First Communion veil. However, she finds that she has actually attacked her daughter. Mrs. Mills tells a distraught Anne that she too has seen the unknown people in the house and that big changes are coming. Charles says he must leave for the front and Grace wakes to find him gone again.

One morning, Grace hears the children’s screams: all of the curtains in the house have disappeared or have been taken down by the intruders, as Anne had said they might. When Grace sees the servants are not alarmed by this, she accuses them of being involved and banishes them from the house. That night, Anne and Nicholas sneak outside to find their father. Anne discovers the graveyard, which the servants have uncovered, and realizes that these are the servants’ graves. At the same time, Grace finds a photograph from the book of the dead and is horrified to see it is of the three servants. The servants appear and follow the children back to the house. Grace has the children hide upstairs, while Mrs. Mills reveals that the three servants died of tuberculosis more than 50 years before. Hearing the children scream, she tells Grace to go upstairs and talk to the intruders. Grace walks upstairs to the bedroom with her rosary beads. There, she discovers that the old woman whom Anne had described is acting as a medium in a séance with Victor’s parents, talking to Anne. The medium asks the children questions about how they died. The children begin to scream that they are not dead. In a frenzy of denial, Grace shakes the séance table, and rips the papers on which the medium has been writing. Victor’s family sees only the table shaking and the paper being ripped. In using this supernatural incident as proof that they are not welcome in the house and should leave, Victor’s mother reveals that Grace had smothered her children then shot herself.
As Grace and the children huddle together in shock in the darkened school room, her memories return to her: stricken with grief for her missing husband, isolated by the children’s condition and the servants leaving her, Grace lost her mind and smothered her children with a pillow. Realizing what she had done, she shot herself. When she then “awoke” and heard her children’s laughter, she assumed God had granted her family a second chance at life. Anne asks if they are in Limbo; Grace is no longer sure of her Catholic teachings. Mrs. Mills tells Grace that they will learn to get along with the intruders who periodically come to the house, that sometimes they will notice them and sometimes they will not. The children find they are no longer photosensitive (as they are no longer living), and for the first time, they can enjoy playing in the sunlight. Victor’s family, unable to rid the house of its former occupants’ spirits, drive away as Grace and the children watch. Although the property is again put up for sale, Grace and the children are firm that “this house is ours,” and “no one can make us leave.”This wonderful and highly atmospheric ghost story is one that is sure to delight those appreciative of this genre of film. Intelligent and finely crafted, it reveals an eerie story borne of psychological despair and horror. Beautifully directed by Alejandro Amenabar, it succeeds where others have failed. Relying on well nuanced moments, rather than grotesque special effects, this is a film that is sure to withstand the test of time and emerge as a classic.

REVIEW: AUSTRALIA

CAST

Nicole Kidman (Stoker)
Hugh Jackman (Chappie)
David Wenham (Van Helsing)
Bryan Brown (F/X)
Jack Thompson (Leatherheads)
Ben Mendelsohn (the Dark Knight Rises)
Essie Davis (Burning Man)
Barry Otto (The Punisher 1989)
John Jarrett (Wolf Creek)
Bruce Spence (Mad Max 2)
Nathin Butler (Black November)

In 1939, Lady Sarah Ashley travels from England to northern Australia to force her philandering husband to sell his faltering cattle station, Faraway Downs. Her husband sends an independent cattle drover, called “Drover”, to transport her to Faraway Downs. Lady Sarah’s husband is murdered shortly before she arrives, and the authorities tell her that the killer is an Aboriginal elder, “King George”. Meanwhile, cattle station manager Neil Fletcher is trying to gain control of Faraway Downs, so that Lesley ‘King’ Carney will have a complete cattle monopoly, giving him negotiating leverage with an Australian army officer, Captain Dutton, who wants to buy the cattle.

The childless Lady Sarah is captivated by the boy Nullah, who has an Aboriginal mother and a white father. Nullah tells her that he has seen her cattle being driven onto Carney’s land — in other words, stolen from her. Because of this Fletcher mistreats Nullah and threatens him and his mother, so Lady Sarah fires Fletcher and decides to try to run the cattle station herself. When Nullah and his mother hide from the authorities in a water tower, his mother drowns. Lady Sarah comforts Nullah by singing the song “Over the Rainbow” from the film The Wizard of Oz. Nullah tells her that “King George” is his grandfather, and that like the Wizard, he too is a “magic man”.
Lady Sarah persuades Drover to take the cattle to Darwin for sale. Drover is friendly with the Aborigines, and therefore shunned by many of the other whites in the territory. It is revealed that he was married to an Aboriginal woman, who died after being refused medical treatment in a hospital because of her race. Lady Sarah also reveals she is unable to have children. Drover leads a team of six other riders, including Lady Sarah, Drover’s Aboriginal brother-in-law Magarri, Nullah, and the station’s accountant Kipling Flynn, to drive the 1,500 cattle to Darwin. They encounter various obstacles along the way, including a fire set by Carney’s men that scares the cattle, resulting in the death of Flynn when the group tries to stop the cattle from stampeding over a cliff. Lady Sarah and Drover fall in love, and she gains a new appreciation for the Australian territory. The team drive the cattle through the dangerous Never Never desert. Then, when at last delivering the cattle in Darwin, the group has to race them onto the ship before Carney’s cattle are loaded.Afterwards, Lady Sarah, Nullah, and Drover live together happily at Faraway Downs for two years. Meanwhile, Fletcher kills Carney, marries his daughter Cath Carney, takes over Carney’s cattle empire, and continues to menace Lady Sarah. It is established that Fletcher was the actual murderer of Lady Sarah’s husband, and is also Nullah’s father. Nullah is drawn to go on a walkabout (a rite of passage) with his grandfather “King George”, but is instead taken by the authorities and sent to live on Mission Island (a fictitious island, but inspired by Bathurst Island) with the other half-Aboriginal children (dubbed the “Stolen Generations”). Lady Sarah, who has come to regard Nullah as her adopted son, vows to rescue him. Meanwhile, she works as a radio operator in Darwin during the escalation of World War II. When the Japanese attack the island and Darwin in 1942, Lady Sarah fears that Nullah has been killed. Drover, who had quarrelled with Lady Sarah and left, returns to Darwin and hears (mistakenly) that she has been killed in the bombing. Drover learns of Nullah’s abduction to Mission Island, and goes with Magarri and a young priest to rescue him and the other children. Meanwhile, Lady Sarah is about to be evacuated, but when Drover and the children sail back into port at Darwin, and Nullah plays “Over the Rainbow” on his harmonica, Lady Sarah hears the music and the three are reunited. Fletcher, distraught at the ruination of his plans and at the death of his wife killed during a Japanese air strike, attempts to shoot Nullah, but is speared by King George and falls dead. Lady Sarah, Drover, and Nullah return to the safety of remote Faraway Downs. There, King George calls for Nullah, who returns to the Outback with his grandfather.The reason this film got bad reviews was simple… people took it the wrong way. Some reviewers were saying that people were laughing in the cinema at the beginning, well so was I. Because it’s funny. It’s  intentionally  funny. Baz Luhrmann himself stated that he tried to put a bit of everything in this film including  comedy as well as drama. If you’ve seen Baz’s films before and loved them then you’ll love this. Like Moulin Rouge, it begins humorously before taking you through a roller coaster of emotions to moments of extreme sadness and tension. It looks beautiful and it’s played beautifully by all of the actors. Basically this is Baz Luhrmann’s nod to the old classics. If you think they don’t make films like they used to, this is highly recommended. Don’t take it as fact, just let yourself enjoy it and you’ll soon be swept along with the story.