Tina (Eva Melander) is an unprepossessing customs officer at a an international ferry port; she looks different from other people due to a chromosome flaw as she will explain. She also has a unique talent of being able to smell fear and guilt on people, making her an exceptional asset for border security. She is an honest, diligent person, but her facial deformities scare most people off and she feels most at home in nature and with animals.
It sounded so promising; a fantasy adaptation with a screenplay by Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, who together also wrote the screenplays for the Lord of the Rings trilogy. A small caveat – they also did so for the Hobbit trilogy which was a lot less engaging but still ‘ok’. But then again, the three of them also worked together on King Kong (2005) which was pretty good, so surely all in all Mortal Engines must be in good hands.
The police have apprehended Lee Man (Aaron Kwok) who is a member of a counterfeiting gang led by ‘Painter’. The police are willing to make a deal if that allows them to capture this mysterious Painter (Yun-Fat Chow), who is proud to be a third generation counterfeiter, a man as capable of charming those around him as he is of ruthlessly killing them if they dare cross him.
So first of all you have to go into this movie with the right mindset: it is a graphic novel adaptation, and it is as violent as Jonh Wick, as over the top as Crank, and the lead is played by Mads Mikkelsen. What more can one ask for if you’re in the mood for a fun, brainless actioner?
The movie is titled Kin, so let’s meet the family: single dad Hal Solinsky (Dennis Quaid) is not particularly close to his two sons, 14-year old Eli (Myles Truitt) and 21-year old Jimmy (Jack Reynor), but is trying to provide a moral compass to them. Since Jimmy spent the last six years of Eli’s childhood behind bars, the two brothers aren’t all that close either. When Eli is out stealing copper wire to make some money, he finds some sort of futuristic weapon in a derelict factory filled with the bodies of dead soldiers.
The story of Outlaw King sort of picks up where the most famous movie about the Wars for Scottish Independence ended: Mel Gibson was William Wallace in Braveheart, and in the Outlaw King we only see some of Wallace’s bodily remains as a catalyst for renewed energy to fight off the English. Outlaw King tells the story of Robert the Bruce (Chris Pine), the self-proclaimed King of the Scots who waged the continuation of the war for independence against King Edward I (Stephen Dillane) and especially his son Prince Edward (Billy Howle).
If you like your martial arts flicks to be ultra gory then The Night Comes for Us is the movie for you. We get dropped straight into the action: when a few villagers have stolen some drugs from the Triad syndicate, the entire village gets wiped out by Ito (Joe Taslim), who is one of the so-called Six Seas: the Triad’s enforcers who are sent to take any measures necessary to keep things under control. For some reason, Ito takes pity on a young girl and decides to spare her – making him now an enemy of the Triad.
More Zombies….?! Yup. We find ourselves in yet another scenario of some mysterious global pandemic that has infected almost all people and turned them into aggressive flesh eaters, but wait, there’s hope: not everyone is infected just yet, and some people even turn out to be immune, so together with the army they are working to find a cure. Thank god for that. Now if only they can find Patient Zero – then they can create the anti-viral strain that will surely prove to be able to save mankind.
Hotel Artemis has a lot going for it. A simple but creative premise: in a not too distant future, criminals can get emergency medical attention in a members-only Hotel. An interesting ensemble cast, led by Jodie Foster and supported by Jeff Goldblum, Dave Bautista and Zachary Quinto to name a few. A great director of photography Chung-hoon Chung, who captured the atmosphere in movies like The Handmaiden and It. So things are set for a great movie.
A key part of the success of 2015’s Sicario was Emily Blunt’s role, which provided a moral balance to the hard-hitting story. Her character does not return in Sicario: Day of the Soldado; the main reason for this, according the director Stefano Sollima, was that they explicitly did not want this sequel to have a moral compass. Unfortunately, it turns out that is exactly what makes this movie nowhere near as interesting as its predecessor.