TV Review: Little Fires Everywhere (Amazon Prime) – Miniseries

Adapted from the 2017 novel of the same name by Celeste Ng and created by Liz Tigelaar, Little Fires Everywhere is set in 1990s Shaker Heights where everything is planned and everybody plays by the rules. Elena Richardson (Reese Witherspoon) embodies this spirit more than most, but when Mia (Kerry Washington), an enigmatic artist and single mother who’s always on the move, arrives with her daughter, Pearl (Lexi Underwood), their idyllic bubble bursts. As Mia rents a house from the Richardsons and begins working in their home, all four Richardson children – Lexie (Jade Pettyjohn), Izzy (Megan Stott), Moody (Gavin Lewis) and Trip (Jordan Elsass) – are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community, as Elena becomes determined to uncover her secrets.

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TV Review: Big Little Lies (Sky Atlantic) – Season Two

Created by David E. Kelley and based on Liane Moriarty’s bestselling book, Big Little Lies tells the tale of five mothers (Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, and Zoe Kravitz) in a seaside town in California whose seemingly perfect lives unravel after they become involved in a murder case investigation. Looking at how their emotionally troubling issues can affect a community, including their husbands, wives, children, and school teachers, this series sees Meryl Streep join the cast as the mothers must deal with the consequences of their lie.

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Film Review: American Psycho

Directed by Mary Harron and based on Bret Easton Ellis‘ 1991 book of the same name, American Psycho follows 26-year-old Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale), a young, handsome and wealthy investment banking executive from New York, who has a beautiful fiancée, Evelyn (Reese Witherspoon), a secretary who’s in love with him, Jean (Chloë Sevigny), and everything a man of his age could only dream of. Yet Bateman remains indistinguishable from his Wall Street colleague – Timothy Bryce (Justin Theroux), Craig McDermott (Josh Lucas), David Van Patten (Bill Sage), Luis Carruthers (Matt Ross), and Paul Allen (Jared Leto). That is, apart from one thing: Bateman is a psychotic serial killer, delving deeper into his violent, hedonistic fantasies as his everyday routine becomes more and more mundane. Fueled by materialism and envy, Bateman’s murderous impulses are sharpened as he steps up his homicidal activities to a frenzied pitch. But how much can he get away with?

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Book v Film: American Psycho

“I had all the characteristics of a human being—flesh, blood, skin, hair—but my depersonalization was so intense, had gone so deep, that my normal ability to feel compassion had been eradicated, the victim of a slow, purposeful erasure. I was simply imitating reality, a rough resemblance of a human being, with only a dim corner of my mind functioning.”

Directed by Mary Harron and based on Bret Easton Ellis‘ 1991 book of the same name, American Psycho follows 26-year-old Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale), a young, handsome and wealthy investment banking executive from New York, who has a beautiful fiancée, Evelyn (Reese Witherspoon), a secretary who’s in love with him, Jean (Chloë Sevigny), and everything a man of his age could only dream of. Yet Bateman remains indistinguishable from his Wall Street colleague – Timothy Bryce (Justin Theroux), Craig McDermott (Josh Lucas), David Van Patten (Bill Sage), Luis Carruthers (Matt Ross), and Paul Allen (Jared Leto). That is, apart from one thing: Bateman is a psychotic serial killer, delving deeper into his violent, hedonistic fantasies as his everyday routine becomes more and more mundane. Fueled by materialism and envy, Bateman’s murderous impulses are sharpened as he steps up his homicidal activities to a frenzied pitch. But how much can he get away with?

Continue reading “Book v Film: American Psycho”

Film Review: Wild

Published in 2012, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail is an American New York Times Best Seller biographical memoir written by Cheryl Strayed. Adapted in 2014 by director Jean-Marc Vallée and writer Nick Hornby, the story chronicles one woman’s 1100-mile solo hike across the Pacific Crest Trail. With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother (Laura Dern), which led to years of reckless, destructive behaviour, Cheryl (Reese Witherspoon) makes the rash decision after losing all hope. With absolutely no experience, and driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl sets off on a journey that maddens, strengthens, and ultimately heals her.

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Book v Film: Wild

“What if I was a liar and a cheat and there was no excuse for what I’d done other than because it was what I wanted and needed to do? What if I was sorry, but if I could go back in time I wouldn’t do anything differently than I had done? What if I’d actually wanted to fuck every one of those men? What if heroin taught me something? What if yes was the right answer instead of no? What if what made me do all those things everyone thought I shouldn’t have done was what also had got me here?”

Published in 2012, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail is an American New York Times Best Seller biographical memoir written by Cheryl Strayed. Adapted in 2014 by director Jean-Marc Vallée and writer Nick Hornby, the story chronicles one woman’s 1100-mile solo hike across the Pacific Crest Trail. With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother (Laura Dern), which led to years of reckless, destructive behaviour, Cheryl (Reese Witherspoon) makes the rash decision after losing all hope. With absolutely no experience, and driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl sets off on a journey that maddens, strengthens, and ultimately heals her.

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New ‘Inherent Vice’ Interactive Character Poster

(Written for Filmoria)

Warner Bros. Pictures has released a new and beautifully designed interactive character poster promoting the brilliant Paul Thomas Anderson‘s highly anticipated Inherent Vice.

The seventh feature from PTA, and the first ever adaptation of a Thomas Pynchon novel, the new poster allows us learn more about the film’s characters, which features an excellent cast including Oscar nominees Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin and Owen Wilson and Oscar winners Reese Witherspoon and Benicio Del Toro.

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Film Review: Devil’s Knot

Rating:

Directed by Atom Egoyan and based on a true story, and in turn on Mara Leveritt‘s novel Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three, Devil’s Knot explores the savage murders of three eight-year-old boys in the small working-class community of West Memphis, Arkansas, in 1993. At the time, the murders sparked a controversial trial of three teenagers – Damien Echols (James Hamrick), Jessie Misskelley Jr. (Kristopher Higgins), and Jason Baldwin (Seth Meriwether) – known as the West Memphis Three, who are accused of killing the kids as part of a satanic ritual and subsequently sentenced to life in prison. But the truth may be scarier as a mother (Reese Witherspoon) and investigator (Colin Firth) suspect all is not as it appears.

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DVD Review: Mud

Rating:

Written and directed by Jeff Nichols, Mud follows two young boys (Tye Sheridan and Jacob Lofland) who encounter a fugitive named Mud (Matthew McConaughey) hiding out on an island in the Mississippi. Explaining that he killed a man in Texas, that vengeful bounty hunters are coming to get him and that he is planning to meet and escape with the love of his life, Juniper (Reese Witherspoon), who is waiting for him in town, the boys form a pact to help Mud evade the bounty hunters on his trail and to reunite him with his true love.

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Film Review: This Means War

(Published in Issue 8 of my publication In Retrospect)

Rating:

Directed by McG, This Means War is a romantic comedy action film that centers on two CIA agents, best friends FDR (Chris Pine) and Tuck (Tom Hardy), who find themselves part of a love triangle when they end up dating the same woman. When neither is willing to back down, the quest for true loves turns into a spy vs. spy operation as the two battle to see who has the best tricks in the book, as they become willing to do anything to come out on top, literally. Meanwhile, Lauren Scott (Reese Witherspoon) must make a decision for herself, as she is forced to choose between the womanising playboy that is FDR, and the sensitive and easier option that is being offered by Tuck. So who, if anyone at all, will she choose?

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