Its Burgundy Wednesday which can only mean #Anchorman2 is out today! Here’s our review #film

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Back in 2004, Anchorman birthed a fan-favourite character in Ron Burgundy and has since gone on to become a cult hit, blossoming into an oft-quoted piece of pop culture. 9 years later, Ron and the team are back by popular demand for another helping of improvised one-liners, celebrity cameos and Brick…being Brick, and the sequel is a worthwhile, if at times over-indulgent follow-up.

Directed by Adam McKay, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues takes place in 1980’s New York, with Ron (Will Ferrell, who co-wrote the screenplay with McKay) now married to co-anchor Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate). When Ron loses out on a promotion to his wife and is unceremoniously fired, he accepts an offer to join rivals GNN – the first 24-hour news network – and quickly reassembles his old team, including Brian Fantana (Paul Rudd), Champ Kind (David Koechner) and weatherman Brick Tamland (Steve Carell). Only slick anchorman Jack Lime (James Marsden) stands in their way of success.

At its best Anchorman 2 is a hilarious, inspired comedy that manages to tap into what made the original work, effectively giving us more of the same. As the old adage goes, “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”, and that certainly applies here. With that said, there is an unexpected but very welcome satirical through-line offering up a light commentary on the importance of good journalism that’s tackled in entertaining fashion.    Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 14.12.50

With many scenes given the improvised treatment (the first cut was 4 hours long), unsurprisingly not every gag hits its mark. Some of those unamusing moments involve an over-indulgence in Brick’s eccentricities, whilst other lapses occur when Ron interacts with African-American boss Linda Jackson (Meagan Good). Particularly when you consider how much the film gets right, it’s disappointing that the filmmakers felt the need to resort to humourless racial jokes.Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 14.13.20

Thankfully, Ferrell’s charm helps to ease the uncomfortable nature of these lazily written scenes, and needless to say he’s at the forefront of the film’s best moments as well. Indeed, If God put Ron Burgundy on this Earth to have salon quality hair and read the news (Ron’s words, not ours), then similarly Ferrell is the man who has been ordained to play him. Elsewhere, Carell’s lovable oddball Brick scores many laugh-out-loud moments, though scenes with Kristen Wiig’s love interest come off as awkward as opposed to funny, whilst Rudd and Koechner both deliver solid turns returning to their supporting roles.

It’s rare for comedies to get a sequel and even rarer for those sequels to be any good. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues proves to be one of the few exceptions, and though it doesn’t quite outdo its predecessor there is plenty of new material for fans of the first film to laugh at. Here’s hoping we won’t have to wait another decade for the inevitable conclusion to the trilogy.

3.5 Stars

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Suit up its time to hit the cinema #Anchorman2 #Badgrandpa #BookThief #film #movie #trailers

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Did you know that the average consumer goes to the cinema three times in a year?! THATS CRAZY!!! There’s so much good stuff out there that you’ll want to watch three films in a day to get through them all. 

So to get you all excited about all the good stuff hitting the cinema this winter, we thought we’d give you some exclusive first looks at some brand new trailers!! ENJOY!!! 

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ANCHORMAN 2: THE LEGEND CONTINUES

With the 70’s behind him, San Diego’s top rated newsman, Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell), returns to the news desk in “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.” Also back for more are Ron’s co- anchor and wife, Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate), weather man Brick Tamland (Steve Carell), man on the street Brian Fontana (Paul Rudd) and sports guy Champ Kind (David Koechner) – All of whom won’t make it easy to stay classy…while taking the nation’s first 24-hour news channel by storm.

Anchorman turns the world classy on 20th December.

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JACKASS PRESENTS: BAD GRANDPA

86 year-old Irving Zisman is on a journey across America with the most unlikely companion, his 8 year-old Grandson Billy in “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa”. This October, the signature Jackass character Irving Zisman (Johnny Knoxville) and Billy (Jackson Nicoll) will take movie audiences along for the most insane hidden camera road trip ever captured on camera.
Along the way Irving will introduce the young and impressionable Billy to people, places and situations that give new meaning to the term childrearing. The duo will encounter male strippers, disgruntled child beauty pageant contestants (and their equally disgruntled mothers), funeral home mourners, biker bar patrons and a whole lot of unsuspecting citizens.

Real people in unreal situations, making for one really messed up comedy.

Grandpa causes all sorts of havoc as of today!!! Screen Shot 2013-10-23 at 10.20.42

THE BOOK THIEF

Based on the beloved international bestselling book, The Book Thief tells the story of Liesel, an extraordinary and courageous young girl sent to live with a foster family in World War II Germany. She learns to read with encouragement from her new family and Max, a Jewish refugee who they are hiding under the stairs. For Liesel and Max, the power of words and imagination become the only escape from the tumultuous events happening around them. The Book Thief is a life-affirming story of survival and of the resilience of the human spirit.

The Book Thief stars Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush and Academy Award nominee Emily Watson and will be released in the UK on 31st January 2014.

 

London Film Festival – Film Review – Mistaken for Strangers #LFF #Film #Review

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In 2010 critically acclaimed US band The National were embarking on their biggest tour to date. Needing extra help – and seeing an opportunity to spend time with his younger brother – lead singer Matt Berninger invited Tom to join the band as a tour assistant. As an aspiring filmmaker, Tom too saw an opportunity and grabbed his camera. As an outsider with the cheek and irreverence of a younger brother, Tom begins to make a mischievous portrait of the band. Neglecting his day job, though, the stresses of the tour only lead Tom to a sense of alienation from the group and his brother. With 200 hours of unedited live footage and interviews, Tom, with the passionate, loving support of his rock star older brother, turns the film’s attention onto himself to rediscover a sense of purpose. What emerges is at once rough edged, enigmatic and moving; a comedic, satirical portrait of a popular band famed for nuance and intensity, and a beautifully honest portrayal of brotherhood.Screen Shot 2013-10-15 at 14.04.02

It will be hard to leave this film without a smile. You have an over achieving older brother who has achieved fame through his band, he is wise, calm and popular and his younger, not so successful brother still lives at home with his mum and dad, can’t hold down a job and lacks real direction in life. The description of these two people alone would make the basis for a great piece of fiction, but actually they are both the product of reality. A real sibling relationship captured, comically, sentimentally and naively through the eyes of Tom. From the outset you see the playfulness, as Matt questions whether or not his younger brother even has a clue as to what he wants to interview him about, and throughout you see the members of The National road crew bite their tongues and put up with Tom’s awful attempt at being a roadie because he is the singers brother. It all makes for an enjoyable watch with plenty of laughs, honest insights and real views to life on the road with a famous band.Screen Shot 2013-10-15 at 14.03.52

You don’t have to be a fan of The National to watch this film, although those who are, will probably find it even more compelling, but as a newbie to this whole world of Indie Rock, I found it interesting, hilarious at times and most importantly real. Its more a story about brotherhood and the things you will and wont put up with for your family, and that no matter how famous you are, supporting those you love is the most important factor.

Go and be surprised, entertained and uplifted with this fun and poignant watch.

3.5 Stars

Pull up a chair, crack open a beer and watch #drinkingbuddies #LFF #LondonFilmFestival #Filmreview

Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 09.14.35Drinking Buddies is set in and around the working and running of a brewery, where Kate (Olivia Wilde) and Luke (Jake Johnson) are co-workers. She’s in a relationship with a wealthy older man (Ron Livingston) and his fiancé (Anna Kendrick) is keen to get their wedding plans moving along. Their friendship is very strong and they have a lot of similar interests, such as the beer they produce and they both share similar playful senses of humour. Their lifestyles revolve around drinking with their co-workers, and for the audience its hard to know whether or not what they share is friendship or something that little bit more.  Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 09.15.06

The film is directed and produced by Joe Swanberg and is an honest and real depiction of friendships and relationships amongst late twenty-somethings. There is sexual tension, tomboyish playfulness and blurred lines around the line drawn between men and women who just enjoy each other’s company. The drama you witness within Drinking Buddies feels real and void of any “film like” over- dramatization; no dramatic realization that one person is with the wrong partner, and no overly thought out inner battles over whether or not each character should be with one another. Some would say it is exactly how you or I would deal with the various situations that present themselves – sit on them until absolutely necessary then apologize profusely! – With the right balance of humour, relatable trials and tribulations of modern day relationships and that awkward feeling where you’re pretty sure there’s underlying sexual tension between you and a friend – this film manages to capture issues that often burden the general public more than anything and yet depict it in such an enjoyable way.Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 09.15.53

Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson are incredibly believable as the lead characters who share this surface based brother/sister /best friend style friendship; and a lot of this is to do with the heavily improvised scenes which not only make the audience feel like they’re catching a glimpse through the keyhole of a group of peoples lives but also help you to dispel any potential distaste towards Wildes beautiful and likeable girl next door persona. You can understand why Luke likes Kate, she’s one of the boys, and is always the one up for some fun. What you do question within this film is why there isn’t any suspicion or doubt from each of their characters other halves. Their tactile approaches to each other can be a little hard to swallow sometimes and yet you’re still routing to see if they eventually take the brave step to cross that all important line.Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 09.18.29

What these characters represent is often the realistic approach to potentially something better suited to ones self. Its clear to the audience that Luke and Kate would be perfect for each other, yet they never dare to do anything more than think about it. You will leave this film questioning whether or not there are regrets about someone or something that you have had the opportunity to pursue in days gone by, and having taken the safer option, maybe regretted after.

What the director manages to do with Drinking Buddies, is give its audience a glimpse into the days of the lives of people not so different to you and I, everyday jobs and simple pleasures that we all have, essentially, life is a simple construct and sometimes its not really worth the complication. With this in mind Swanberg delivers a film that is fun to watch, quirky in its own right and most importantly get you thinking. Its style is simple and poignant, so wont be everyone’s cup of tea, not much happens throughout, but what does happen manages to get you routing for those you’re watching, laughing at similarities that you most likely will see in yourself, and leaving hopefully with a smile on your face.

Drinking Buddies hits cinemas 1st November.

4 Stars

Remember your awkward teenage Summer with @Thewaywayback #filmreview #film

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If you love Sam Rockwell as much as we do, then you’ll be queuing up to watch him in this quirky Summer coming of age flick which hits cinemas today.

The film follows shy 14-year-old Duncan as he goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend’s daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.

Nothing overly dramatic happens in this film, it’s just more of a reminiscent and nostalgic journey into all of our uncomfortable adolescent selves where we’re discovering new things, good and bad, meeting new people and most importantly having that very awkward, lonely teenage Summer.

The film boasts a great cast and starts very well. We see a new Steve Carell, no longer a slap-stick comic character, this time a straight talking stepdad which any teenager would find offensive and domineering. Toni Colette is the ‘glass half full and things could be worse so I’ll put up with it’ mother of Duncan and Sam Rockwell is the saving grace coolest guy in town who runs (rather haphazardly) the Water Wizz water park.Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 08.35.07

These are only half the key characters in the film, but immediately you see a pattern forming. These characters are very clearly stock and presented in an almost formulaic approach to what you would hope would make a good/poignant/funny film. In addition you have the constantly drunk neighbour – who provides a monologue of comic proportions as the family arrive at their Summer home; her overly confident sharp talking tween son, additional neighbours who turn Carell and Colette’s characters into relatable drunken parental figures around the dinner table and finally there’s the shy inquisitive beautiful girl who doesn’t conform to her bimbo girlfriends and inevitably becomes the object of Duncan’s affections.Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 08.34.40

These all sound like the recipe for a classic coming of age tale, and if they had all come together perfectly The Way, Way Back would have been one of those must watch films, but something just doesn’t quite gel together. You will probably be willing this film to be much more enchanting than it actually is and will most likely find sanctuary like Duncan, at the Water Wizz water park where Sam Rockwell dominates. His effortlessness and ease provides a distinct contrast to the rest of the cast who feel slightly more contrived, which some may argue is a testament to his talent as an actor.

But by no means is this film unwatchable, there are some brilliant moments of comedy, and over arching reminders of many of our teenage experiences plus some brilliant performances across the board in their own rights. It’s hard to put a finger on what exactly doesn’t work, but you certainly do come away trying to work out what could just make it that little bit better

3 Stars

The Way, Way Back is out on general release from today.

 

 

 

 

What does Sansa Stark, Neil from the Inbetweeners & a Misfit have in Common? #gameofthrones #tv

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What does Sansa Stark, Neil from the Inbetweeners and a former Misfit all have in common? Well, they spoke to us at the amazing BAFTA Television Craft Awards this weekend.

Its a hard life standing on the red carpet chatting to amazing talent infront and behind the camera, but someone’s gotta do it! So we asked one of our contributors and our friends Red Carpet News TV to check out all the gossip and the awards from backstage at the Brewery in Barbican and here’s what we came up with – enjoy!

Sophie Turner – Sansa Stark in Game of Thrones tells us what’s in store for her character next season:


Blake Harrison– Neil from The Inbetweeners lets us know if there really is going to be an Inbetweeners 2 movie 

Antonia Thomas – Tells us what she misses most about Misfits and all about her new film projects

Jessica Hynes – Talks about her new Suffragette comedy and about the final Cornetto Trilogy film from her good friend Simon Pegg

Russell Tovey – Chats about his brand new sitcom The Job Lot

Is this the end for Sister Bernadette? – Laura Main and Stephen McGann give a Call the Midwife Exclusive!