Monthly Archives: July 2013

A Good Day to Die Hard

Starring Bruce Willis & Jai Courtney

Directed by either a real guy named John Moore or more likely, a committee of advertising and tourism executives.

a-good-day-to-die-hard (1)This is the fifth film in the progressively worsening Die Hard franchise. I try to find positive aspects in most films. This film was difficult. Jai Courtney has a fine screen presence and is likable as an actor. However, his character, Jack McClaine made no sense.

The film opens in Moscow. Jack assassinates some guy in a nightclub. The film jumps to NY where John McClaine receives some hand written notes from an expository character about his son, Jack. Bruce Willis mumbles something about them not talking. This may have been an attempt at character development but for all i know Willis may have been trying to bust out some Seth Rogen style improv. Whatever he said was most likely so incomprehensible that the sound editors covered it up by digitally manipulating the film to sound like Willis was mumbling. I’m probably giving them too much credit.

images (1)Where was I? That’s right, John McClaine goes to Moscow  to get his son Jack back. What else happens? John McClaine rides around in a taxi. John McClaine gets into a gunfight and bumps into his son. Car chase ensues. John and Jack catch up. There is some contrived father son bonding. Jack and John kill the Moscow Mafia. Jack and John blow up half of Moscow. Escape in a CIA helicopter by dangling from the rail. John and Jack go back to NY. John and Jack meet Lucy McClaine. Cue credits. This film could have been plotted out on a napkin.

Sounds simple right? So ‘what could possibly be confusing about that?’ you may wonder. First of all, Willis keeps spouting bizarre one liners that make no sense within the context of the film such as “I’m on vacation”. Also, it clearly stated that Jack was in the CIA on the hand written notes Willis received, but then the CIA connection is treated like some kind of twist. Finally, I had no idea who the bad guys were or why Jack assassinated the guy in the beginning. Also, there was some Russian woman who was wearing nothing but a bra under a motorcycle jacket. In Moscow of all places.A-Good-Day-to-Die-Hard-Yuliya-Snigir

I was not expecting a perfect film but I was expecting it to be fun. Bruce Willis has made some crap but he always had enough on-screen charisma to carry the film. He could smirk his way through any script. Now he mumbles his way through horrendous one liners that make no sense in slapped together scripts that are more contrived than your typical JJ Abrams blockbuster.

The Fall

This will be returning to The Astor on Jy 14 at 4:30 pm. I highly recommend seeing this on the big screen. It is truly astounding on The Astor super screen and cannot be matched by home theatre or downloaded content.

Anamorphic Tilt

The Fall

Directed by Tarsem

Starring Lee Pace & Catinca Untaru

2006, 115 Minutes

Reviewed by Wayne Pollock on 17/02/2012


To put it mildly The Fall is a visual treat filmed on location across 20 countries that was especially jaw dropping on The Astor’s Superscreen. Most of these locations had never been used in a fictional film before. To get a rough idea of what to expect, I would say to think of a melding between the cinematography of Baraka with a story reminiscent of Pan’s Labyrinth.

To discuss only the locations and the aesthetic beauty of The Fall would be, in my opinion, a disservice to the film as a whole. For the aesthetics are the ingredients and not quite enough to get a Tarsem Singh film to the finish line. This was evident in his latest film ‘Immortals’ (2011). A film generally considered ‘nice to look…

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