With a stellar cast that includes Michala Banas, Ryan Shelton, Dave Lawson, Tegan Higginbotham and Sam Watkins one of the most interesting comedies to screen at this year’s Sti Kilda Film Festival is For Your Sins. Dave G catches up with director Julian Lucas to see how this great little comedy came together.
We chat to blues legend Walter Trout about his brand new album We’re All In This Together, an album that sees him team up some of the greatest blues musicians of all time. Walter tells us how he managed to put together this impressive list of guests and how it felt to record in the studio with them.
You can listen to or download our Walter Trout interview right here.
One of the most powerful films to screen in cinemas in 2017 is Patriot’s Day from director Peter Berg. Over the years Berg has established himself as a filmmaker who can capture realism in a way that very few filmmakers before him have done so. When his television show Friday Night Lights first aired some people thought it was a reality television show in the vein of The Hills or Laguna Beach, that was all down to how realistic the characters and their dialogue were.
In recent years Berg has also made the films Lone Survivor, about the courageous Marcus Luttrell and the bloody fight against the Taliban, and Deepwater Horizon, a dramatisation of the offshore drilling rig disaster in April 2010 that resulted in America’s worst ever oil spill. Now he turns his eyes to the events of the Boston bombing marathon with Patriot’s Day which stars Berg’s regular contributor Mark Wahlberg.
“I was actually in New York when the marathon bombings happened,” explains Berg. “I remember paying really close attention to it and being very aware and being very touched with the way the city clearly came together.and rallied together to capture these two criminals but to also support themselves so much after the bombings. I was very touched about how the community came together. Something that I was very interested in doing with this film was showing a very positive reaction that law enforcement had and show how helpful law enforcement was and how tireless these men were and how they were willing to put themselves in the line of fire to help the citizens of Boston. On the very edges of this tragedy, we saw some of the best that we can offer as citizens.”
“There were so many citizens,” he goes on. “Whether they were trauma surgeons, workers at the local hospitals, paramedics, firefighters, citizens like Dun Meng, the young Chinese immigrant who was carjacked by the brothers and who used every bit of wit and intelligence that he had to stay alive. He planned and executed a stunning escape, and that took an enormous amount of courage, but he was able to tell the Police where they were and probably more so than anybody else can be given credit for stopping these guys.”
The one thing that Berg says he realised during this film was ‘love wins’. “Love wins,” he says smiling. “When you talk to these survivors, many of which have had amputations or have suffered brain injuries or have been permanently scarred by this event and you ask what is the takeaway? Is it possible to have the ability to contextualise this horrific experience and almost all of them said, love. Love wins! This experience as horrible as it has been has made me appreciate so much my family, my friends, my community. We got blind-sighted, we got knocked down, we got beat up but we came back, we came back together with love.”
Aside from the victims of the horrific events, Berg said he also wanted to pay tribute to those whose work took them into the line of fire. “Characters like Ed Davis who is the Police Commissioner, the head of the FBI, the Mayor – it was a small group of men. People always say ‘thank God it didn’t happen on my watch’, well it happened on their watch. To look at how these men kind of realised ‘well there is nobody else but us, we’ve got to stop this, and we’ve got to fix this, and we need to figure out who did it’. I think watching individuals perform under that kind of duress is quite compelling and that is something we worked hard to capture.
Joining Berg here as not only as a producer on the film but also as his leading man is Mark Wahlberg who plays dogged Police Officer Tommy Saunders who makes it his mission to track down the wanted men in the aftermath of the bombings.
“This movie is not about our own individual experiences as actors,” says Wahlberg. “It is up to us to not only get it right but to honour the victims as well as all the people who worked so tirelessly to offer aid – the EMT’s, the first responders, the Police, the FBI and also going and tracking these guys down to make sure they didn’t cause any more harm. Pete (Berg) cares, and he wants to tell the stories of these heroes, and he is committed to getting it right.”
Like Berg Wahlberg is also full of praise for how Boston pulled together as a community in the wake of the bombings. “When these bombs went off people didn’t run away they ran towards the victims,” he says. “They ran to those that were injured, and that says a lot about the people of the city. Individuals from all walks of life just coming up and stepping up. I mean there were women going out there and using their purse straps as tourniquets, and you are talking about huge acts of heroism that were like awe-inspiring on every level. For somebody to go out there and commit to serving their community or their country that is a big deal, that is a really big deal, and that needs to be recognised. Those heroes and anybody else that would put themselves out of their way and at risk or in harm’s way to help strangers. This was a marathon, we’re talking about mothers, fathers, children to cheer on their loved ones. It is a joyous occasion, you know people don’t expect something like this to happen, and the fact that people all rallied around the way they did was really incredible. Good will always overcome evil. People will continue to do bad things, but they will never dictate how we live our lives. We need to be able to go to a marathon, to a baseball game and we need to be able to go to the movies, and we need to be able to live normal lives, you know. We need to all come together and then good will always overcome evil.
Patriots Day is in cinemas now
Few trailers have had people talking as much this year as the trailer for The Hitman’s Bodyguard – let’s face it if you’re an action junkie then this is going to be one of the best films of the year. The film sees Ryan Reynolds team up with action star Samuel L. Jackson.
Directed by Australian director Patrick Hughes, who showed enough with his debut film Red Hill to find himself in charge of The Expendables 3, The Hitman’s Bodyguard sees the legend himself Samuel L. Jackson play a character that needs to be protected by Reynolds, an actor who has shown in recent years that he is no slouch when it comes to action either – think Deadpool and Safe House for some of his best action work.
“I play a guy called Michael Bryce who suffers from extraordinary hubris,” says Reynolds with a huge grin on his face. “He is an executive protection agent, he is a self-proclaimed Triple A rated executive protection agent. Early on in the movie he loses a client and that sends him down a kind of shame spiral – his life then sort of unravels and this superficial existence that he had is all kind of lost. When we find him at the beginning of the film he is still actually believing that he is a much lower-rent protection agent, but he is still the best in the business he’s just taken a little bit of a fall from grace. He is then asked by a former flame of his, somebody that he used to be really in love with or perhaps still is, named Amelia from Interpol for help, she needs his services immediately. She’s not really asking him for his services she is telling him. So he complies, shows up and finds that his charge is a hitman who he has had a number of encounters with in the past so in a nut-shell my job is to protect a man who has spent the better part of a decade trying to kill me. These guys couldn’t be more polarised when we meet them but as we move through the film they both seem to get a begrudged love and respect for each other, and it is a love story. To me that is the story of the film – it is a love story wrapped in this whole crazy, zany action set-piece.”
Reynolds says when he first read the script he knew exactly who he wanted to have starring alongside him in the film. “Early on when I read the script the first thing I said to my agents was can we get Sam Jackson because I’d done an animated film with him years ago called Turbo and they paired us together for the junkets and we had great chemistry and I remember making a mental book note at the moment and thinking ‘oh if I ever find a kind of two-hander movie this would be a good guy to do it with and it proves in my opinion that we were right. We have a good thing going – and I think that is nice.”
Early critics screening of The Hitman’s Bodyguard has seen critics talking about the fact that this isn’t just your average action film and that is something that Reynolds agrees completely with “There is a certain heightened tone to this film and I think the audience are going to be excited to see that we embrace that tone in a wonderful way,” he explains. “You can have these amazing action sequences but they aren’t really ladened down with these depressing emotional spirals they are all kind of uplifting and fun, and you know every set-piece is very unique, it has its own beginning, middle and end and I think audiences are going to find it is one of those movies that just zips past so much that when you get to the end you’re like ‘what… I want thirty minutes more. I want to see these guys together more.’ At the end though we take them on a real adventure.”
Teaming up with Reynolds and Jackson in the film is Salma Hayek who moves away from some of the comedies that she has been doing recently – Sausage Party, Grown-Ups etc – and one again returns to the action genre. Here she plays Sonia – the wife of Samuel L. Jackson’s hit-man character, Darius.
“Sonia is a fantastic character,” says Hayek when she is asked to explain her character. “She is a married woman but her marriage is a little bit unusual because she is married to a hitman and she is not an outlaw but she is really, really tough. If anybody can handle by husband who is insane and very, very dangerous it is definitely Sonia. Everything that happens happens because Darius is in love with me, and he is so in love with me that everything he does is to prove his love for her. So it is really a love story and they have this amazing, wonderful, passionate, crazy relationship and even in the few moments where you get to see it it’s insane and romantic and full of fire in every way. You definitely get a glimpse of the fact that this woman is his match.”
For Hayek she says one of the highlights of working on The Hitman’s Bodyguard was certainly getting to work with Samuel L. Jackson. “I love Sam,” she says laughing. “I had been a fan for many, many years. He’s a legend and I was so excited that I got a chance to work with him and it ended up being so easy and it’s been fabulous to be his wife – his crazy, crazy wife – and she is very unpredictable and in a way very volatile, but he is still very solid, he is still a very stable character but with her you never know what she is going to say – you never know what is going to come out of her mouth. I think that is what makes her special. One very special trait of my character is that she has the dirtiest mouth of any character that I have ever played, and I have played characters with dirty mouths before. I say so many dirty things, bad words and I repeat them one after another and I have to say I love her. She is cuckoo but I love her.”
The Hitman’s Bodyguard is screening now.
Summary: Based on the hit novel by Rick Yancey The 5th Wave sees teenager Cassie Sullivan’s (Chloe Grace Moretz) world get turned upside overnight. One moment she is your typical partying High School student who has a crush on classmate Ben Parish (Nick Robinson) and the next moment everything changes as an alien race known as The Others begin four waves of attack on Earth.
Soon Cassie finds herself in a desperate bid to survive while trying to find her brother, Sam (Zackary Arthur) who has become separated from her and is now in the so-called safe hands of the military. But Cassie knows that nobody or nowhere is safe anymore and she will do anything to get back to her brother.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 14th January 2016
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Director: J Blakeson
Screenwriter: Susannah Grant, Akiva Goldsman, Jeff Pinkner, Rick Yancey (novel)
Cast: Zackary Arthur (Sam Sullivan), Cade Conan Ball (Oompa), Talitha Bateman (Teacup), Michael Beasley (Major Bob), Maria Bello (Sergeant Reznik), Bailey Ann Borders (Julia), Faneal Godbold (Trooper Fay), Nadji Jeter (Poundcake), Adam C. Johnson (Sergeant Webb), Scott Ledbetter (Officer Henry), Charman Lee (Ms. Paulson), Ron Livingston (Oliver Sullivan), Gabriela Lopez (Lizbeth), Alex MacNicoll (Flintstone), Flynn McHugh (Tank), Maika Monroe (Ringer), Chloe Grace Moretz (Cassie Sullivan), Johnny Otto (Dr. Osborne), Tony Revolori (Dumbo), Derek Roberts (Private Barker), Alex Roe (Evan Walker), Nick Robinson (Ben Parish/Zombie), Liev Schreiber (Colonel Vosch), Terry Serpico (Hutchfield), Maggie Siff (Lisa Sullivan), Parker Wierling (Jeremy)
Runtime: 112 mins
OUR THE 5th WAVE REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Hunger Games, Divergent, Maze Runner – there’s been no shortage of teen utopian flicks coming out the last few years and now there is a new kid in the playground – The 5th Wave, and boy does this kid have some bite. The 5th Wave doesn’t mess around, as some unsuspecting parents discovered in the screening I was in when they had to rush their kids from the cinemas after Chloe Grace Moretz gets shotgun friendly within the opening moments of the film. Yes this film’s a winner, but I just wish I’d had a better and longer time to get to know the characters.
Don’t get me wrong The 5th Wave delivers on all cylinders, in fact it has everything that a movie like this needs. The problem is that the story and the characters are so interesting I wanted to spend longer in their world. Instead of a two hour movie I would much rather have seen Cassie and her family put through trials for a longer period of time and had this become a television series that I could enjoy alongside The Walking Dead and Under The Dome. The first four waves of the attack happen so quickly in the film it seems the only way to do it true justice would be to have it happen over two or three seasons of a show.
Still credit needs to be paid to The 5th Wave as a film. Director J. Blakeson knows how to deliver suspense, he did it by the bucket loads in the haunting The Disappearance Of Alice Creed and here he teams up with a talented screenwriting team that among others features the talented Akiva Goldsman (yes the genius that brought us I Am Legend). Together these two set about making this film enjoyable for the same reason we loved Maze Runner… because they don’t hold back and as a result the story is more believable. Believability was really on their side as Cassie isn’t based in some far off world, her world is our world just with some alien attackers added. Blakeson and co then brilliantly have her face decisions that many of us would struggle to comprehend and the result is a film that has you on the edge of your seat throughout. Once the twists and turns start occurring in the plot you never know what is going to happen next.
The other thing that makes The 5th Wave work so well is that all the characters are relatable. Cassie isn’t your superhero archetype, instead she is the girl next door who suddenly finds herself having to fight for survival. Her instinct of wanting to protect her family is something that we all identify with and the audience very quickly finds themself ‘barracking’ for her. Sadly that same feeling takes a bit longer to generate with Ben as he missing for a huge part of the middle area of the film… still he is likable enough for it to come back and it would have been nice to have been able to spend more time getting to know him as a character.
The well written script and good direction from Blakeson also allows the young stars to shine. Chloe Grace Moretz is her usual stand-out best but unlike her role in Kick-Ass we do get to see a much softer side to her this time around as well. She is well supported by Nick Robinson and also Alex Roe who both announce themselves as stars of the future. A gruff performance by Liev Schreiber is also worth mentioning as he is at his menacing best.
One of the saddest things about writing this review is that I can’t tell you the real reason for why I loved The 5th Wave so much and that is for the twisted elements that exist due to the film’s plot turns and revelations. The 5th Wave is a good action sci-fi that has a little more bite than some would predict. Easy-to-warm-to-characters and an interesting storyline means the audience quickly feels part of this new world… so now we can only hope that this spins off into franchise so we can spend a little more time watching Cassie and co go up against The Others. Bring on number 2 please.
You can listen to Greg’s The 5th Wave review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #161
You can listen to Nick’s The 5th Wave review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #161
The 5th Wave, Directed by J Blakeson is a film adaptation from the popular novel written by Rick Yancey.
Chloë Grace Moretez (Cassie Sullivan) is the star of the film accompanied by a variety of young actors. Nick Robinson (Ben Parish), Alex Roe (Evan Walker), Zackary Arthur (Sam Sullivan) and Maika Monroe (Ringer) all play leading roles in the film.
The 5th Wave is the story of an alien race, known as The Others, coming to Earth and trying to claim the planet as their own. The Others attack Earth in a series of waves. The 1st Wave, lights out. All electrical appliances and vehicles are terminated from being able to be used by mankind. The 2nd Wave, Surfs Up. This wave involved tsunamis and flooding to occur all over the world and killing millions. The 3rd Wave, Pestilence. The Others increased the effects of the bird flu and infected the whole planet ridding Earth of those who were left, those who caught it at least. The 4th Wave, They Arrive. In this wave The Others come to Earth in human form and try to gather up the last remaking human’s by impersonating the Army. The 5th Wave… This is what the whole film is based around. Trying to stop the 5th wave from happening.
During the film I loved the acting by some of the cast members and I loved the aspect that Humans are so delicate and vulnerable to so many things and how the aliens used our vulnerabilities to kill us. The story itself was a good story. I felt as though it was dragging on a little bit towards the middle of the film but that’s just my personal opinion. Once a few plot twists were presented to the audience things really picked up in my opinion. Being the School holidays this is a great film to take the whole family to. Action, drama and romance are all included writhing the film so I think there should be an aspect of the film that everyone will enjoy.
Actor Christopher Larkin portrays Monty Green on the hit television series The 100. With him about to arrive in Melbourne for Oz Comic Con Dave G sat down for a chat with him. During the interview we talked about his challenging role on The 100 and what it means getting to come to a convention like this.
You can listen to our full Christopher Larkin interview below.
Christopher Larkin will be attending this year’s Oz Comic Con in Melbourne which is being held in Melbourne on 9-10 June. Tickets can be purchased here.
RAW made its World Premiere at Cannes Film Festival earlier this year, where it was awarded the coveted FIPRESCI Award and was lauded by critics and fans alike as the genre sensation of the festival.
RAW is the debut feature of French director Julia Ducournau, and tells the story of a young vegetarian who discovers her dark side when she is forced to participate in a carnivorous hazing ritual on her first day at Veterinary school. It’s a coming-of-age tale with a cannibal theme that’ll appeal to genre buffs and cinephiles alike, provided they have strong stomachs!
Earlier this week RAW held its international premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and created headlines around the globe when paramedics were called to the cinema to treat three audience members who fainted during its ‘Midnight Madness’ screening.
Monster Pictures is the Australian license holder of RAW and has its release set for March 2017.
Neil Foley, Monster Pictures’ Head of Acquisitions and Executive Producer of Monster Fest, says of RAW “This is absolutely one of the greatest genre films I’ve seen in my time at Monster, it references many of the masters, from Argento to Carpenter to Cronenberg, but remains a completely unique and fresh take on the genre. It’s simultaneously harrowing and beautiful, and is probably our most exciting acquisition to date.”
The critical response to the film thus far has been full of praise, and includes the following:
“…the assured storytelling and direction, including some of the goriest makeup effects this side of Rob Zombie, turn Raw into the kind of crossover film that takes the horror genre into another domain” – Hollywood Reporter
““Raw” is a deliciously fevered stew of nightmare fuel that hangs together with a breezily confident sense of superior craft.” – Variety
“Genre buffs and fests will gobble it up, and this prime cut should be the plat du jour on cult theatrical menus worldwide… All in all, a classily savorous fright tartare.” – Screen Daily
RAW will Open Monster Fest on November 24 and will be followed by the Opening Night Gala. Tickets will go on sale over the coming weeks and will be announced via the Monster Fest website and associated social media.
Monster Fest is also pleased to announce its second themed sidebar, ‘Frequencies’, which is focused on genre narratives made for or about the small screen. The Frequencies section will be headlined by the World Premiere launch of the new Headpress book, ARE YOU IN THE HOUSE ALONE? A TV MOVIE COMPENDIUM 1964-1999, edited by American television scholar Amanda Reyes who will appear at the festival on a clip-and-tell panel about the history of television movies, with the book’s contributors Lee Gambin, John Harrison and stuntwoman Marneen Fields, followed by a screening of Buzz Kulik’s 1974 telefright, BAD RONALD and co-presented by Melbourne film society Cinemaniacs.
The section will also include the Australian Premiere of Jackson Stewart’s BEYOND THE GATES starring Graham Skipper (THE MIND’S EYE) and Chase Williamson (JOHN DIES AT THE END) as two brothers who find that their father’s disappearance may be connected to a sinister VHS board game. The premiere is presented by Umbrella Entertainment and will be accompanied by a NIGHTMARE VHS Board Game Party in association with Toronto’s Black Museum.
This year’s Monster Symposium series of multimedia lectures also expands on this broadcasting theme with presentations including Jodi McAlister’s DIERDRE HALL IS THE DEVIL about occultism on daytime soaps, Andrew Nette on the long-unavailable Australian horror anthology show THE EVIL TOUCH, Alexandra Heller-Nicholas on Stephen Volk’s influential and hysteria-inducing pseudo-doc GHOSTWATCH, Kier-La Janisse on Nigel Kneale’s prescient 1968 teleplay THE YEAR OF THE SEX OLYMPICS and Andrew Nette and Dean Brandum on the beloved Crawford crime show HOMICIDE, preceding a special screening of the 1964 episode “Witch Hunt”.
All-access Passes to Monster Fest 2016 are on sale now here:https://www.lidocinemas.com.au/Promotion/Monster-Fest-2016-At-Lido
Tickets for the recently announced Ted Kotcheff masterclass at the Swinburne University Media and Communication Monster Academy are available here:http://www.monsterfest.com.au/events/ted-kotcheff-masterclass/
Founded in 2011, Monster Fest is a mix of Premieres, international festival favourites, challenging new discoveries and curated repertory sidebars alongside industry-focused events such as panels and masterclasses with renowned international guests, and a special emphasis on supporting emerging Australian genre film talent through the festival and beyond. Monster Fest is mounted with the support of Screen Australia and Film Victoria.
With The Iron Maidens currently wowing Australian audiences with their amazing shows Dave G caught up with Nikki Stringfield to find out what led her to join the Maidens and where her love for Iron Maiden first came from.
You can listen to our Iron Maidens interview below.
With new Australian thriller Crushed out on VOD this week Buzz’s Dave Griffiths caught up with one of the stars of the film Roxane Wilson. Dave chats to Roxane about what it is like acting in an intense film like Crushed and what it was like working with director Megan Riakos.
You can listen to or download our Roxane Wilson interview right here.
Brisbane band A Breach Of Silence are back with a brand new album, Secrets, out through Eclipse Records so Dave Griffiths caught up with Mat Cosgrove to chat about the brand new album. Mat also chats to us about A Breach Of Silence’s brand new sound and their plans for future tours.
You can listen to or download our A Breach Of Silence interview right here.