This time around we take a Journey To The Centre Of The Earth; discover a Resurrection Of Evil; Cage Dive gives a new meaning to going ‘down under’; Belle Du Jour is the order of the day; A Kind Of Murder is suspect in more ways than one; Channel Zero is worth viewing and Baby Driver doesn’t spin its wheels.
Blu-ray Review: Journey To The Centre Of The Earth
This 1959 adaptation ofJules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth is an exceptional adventure for the whole family. Henry Levin directs with verve, creating a sense of wonder as James Mason leads his crew deeper and deeper into the earth’s core. The Cinemascope visuals are stunning (this is a 4K remaster), while Bernard Herrmann‘s score is next level great – listen-out for the cue that inspired Danny Elfman’s Batman score.
They don’t make them like this anymore.
This Eureka release comes with a Kim Newman interview, a featurette on the film’s restoration, a commentary from Diane Baker and Film Historians Steven C. Smith and Nick Redman, a trailer and a booklet.
DVD Review: Resurrection of Evil
Resurrection of Evil is a well made horror that really hits the spot. Unlike a lot of genre movies, care and attention has gone into the set design and look of the film. Julie Benz stars as a recovering addict who discovers that her apartment building has quite a sinister secret lurking within its walls. Andrew C. Erin’s film was inspired by the true-life horror of serial killer of Daniel H. Turnham (read The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson for more info) and he manages to score some mood and serious gore.
DVD Review: Cage Dive
Your first thought will be ‘not another found footage movie’, but stick with Cage Dive and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. A group of friend go for a shark diving experience in Australia, but a freak wave leaves them in the water with some hungry sharks. Gerald Rascionato’s film may have a lot of the genre tropes. but he manages to deliver characterisation and keep the tension levels high. Having said all that, this would be better if it was shot as a traditional film.
You get a solid making-of documentary and a few deleted scenes.
Blu-ray Review: Belle Du Jour
Belle Du Jour is probably Luis Buñuel most famous film. This 1967 drama sees Catherine Deneuve play a bored housewife who decides to pass her afternoons by working in a brothel. Sounds saucy, but Luis Buñuel’s surrealist stylings means that there’s much more to this than meets the eye. This is a classy piece of abstract cinema and it offers up an off-kilter look at marriage in France. Deneuve is excellent, and she brings across a naiveté and world-weariness which gives her character a lot of complexity.
Released at the height of the French New Wave in the 1960s, Belle Du Jour helped cement Luis Buñuel ‘s reputation as an iconic filmmaker, while it also made Deneuve an international star.
This 50th anniversary release of Belle Du Jour is jammed with extras including interviews, commentaries and documentaries. Worth owning.
A Kind Of Murder
Based on the Patricia Highsmith novel The Blunderer, A Kind Of Murder is a handsome but uninspired thriller from director Andy Goddard. A strong cast made-up of Patrick Wilson, Jessica Biel, Vincent Kartheiser, Haley Bennett, and Eddie Marsan can’t generate the right amount of energy to try and kick-start the inert script.
Wilson plays an amateur writer accused of murdering his wife – did he do it, or did he get too close to a real wife-killer? You won’t reply care as this ticks down towards a lacklustre finale. The main problem might be the casting of Vincent Kartheiser as a tough, rule-breaking cop. There’s no way that Mad Men‘s Pete Campbell could intimidate anyone. The production design is nice though.
A Stephen King-ish horror series filled with bleak atmosphere and chilly expectation, Candle Cove sees a man return to the town where he grew up. His brother mysteriously disappeared years before and strange things once again start to happen.
There’s a lot to enjoy in this well produced show, which keeps the creeps rolling throughout its self-contained six-episode run. This is worth checking out.
Edgar Wright‘s Baby Driver is an energetic action-comedy cum musical. Wright directs with precision and verve, keeping the music and visuals intertwined in a wild dance. Ansel Elgort is the wheelman who likes to groove to the tunes as he spins his tyres. The supporting cast is great, with Man Men‘s Jon Hamm getting to shine as a banker turned gun totting bank robber. It’s a shame the tunes are a tad cliched and that the finale lacks originality. And don’t get me started on a man being called Baby.
Baby Driver comes packed with everything you’d ever want. Wright lets you take a peek behind every aspect of production in this exceptional package. You’ll think you’ve made the film yourself by the time you’re done!