Tag Archives: thriller

Triple 9 (2016) Review

Published by: Anthony Wallace


UnknownA group of crooked cops are under pressure by a Russian Mob to pull of a heist. But not everyone is in on the job as Chris Allen is partners with Michael Atwood who has relations with the boss’s family. When the IA gets closer to the bandits and the walls begin to close in, everyone is on their own and trust soon turns to betrayal. The movie is directed by John Hillcoat with stars Casey Affleck, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Anthony Mackie, and Woody Harrelson.

From the same person who brought us ‘Lawless‘ and ‘The Road‘, John Hillcoat delivers an action packed drama that wasn’t promoted or advertised. Not having seen the trailer I went into ‘Triple 9‘ with low expectations because of the lack of exposure in theaters and on television. So how did the movie fair? Although it kept my attention with the story and action sequences the film is far from perfect but it managed to stand on its own two legs for most of the runtime.

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What this movie reminded me a lot of was Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Departed‘ and Antoine Fuqua’s ‘Training Day‘. In this film we find Michael Atwood lead a group of men in a series of heists while working for a Russian Mob. Along the way he struggles to please his bosses while trying to see his son whenever possible. It gets to a point where Michael has to make drastic decisions in order to stay alive. At the same time we follow Chris Allen (Casey Affleck) as he is partnered with Michael unknowing of his involvement with the mob. This leads to a heist that is near close to impossible where the only solution is to call a triple 9 and lure police away from the police station in order to steal from The Department of Homeland Security.

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The movie keeps the viewers attention with the drama and crime scenes that are genuine to what we see with cartels and inner-city violence. There’s one scene that got a reaction from the audience that hits close to home that involves a car and head trophies sitting on the hood of the trunk. And the performances by Affleck and Ejiofor were what stood out from everyone else. Everyone contributed in their own way including Woody Harrelson who played the IA detective and father of Chris. One of the disappointing things that took me by surprise was the sudden death of one of the characters. Without spoiling it all I’ll say is that I really thought this character would have had a leading part in the movie.

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There wasn’t necessarily a bad performance throughout the movie; however, what did hurt the film was the pacing. After starting strong with a bank heist we then get introduced to the mob. It’s soon after that we learn of the heist that’s to take place in the near future. But until then the movie takes its time leading up to the heist that a good twenty minutes could have been removed to quicken the pace without hurting the story. And where the movie also suffers is in the quick and sudden resolution between Michael and the Russian mob. The movie could have better intertwined the crooked cop narrative along with the mob’s narrative. It felt at times the two were separate from each other yet people were referenced by each side. Aside from these issues, your entertained till the end with decent performances from everyone involved.

Although the narrative could’ve been a little tighter with less of a runtime, ‘Triple 9‘ is good enough to leave audience members satisfied. It may not have that effort as compared to ‘Training Day‘ or ‘The Departed‘ but it follows the same twists and turns each were able to offer. Casey Affleck and Chiwetel Ejiofor are the leads who did a great job along with Woody Harrelson. Having not been advertised enough it’s disappointing this movie won’t do as good financially had it been the other way around.

Rating: 6.5/10

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What do you guys think? Have you heard of ‘Triple 9‘ and are planning to watch it? Comment below and click the like button if you enjoyed reading this post.

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The Witch (2016) Review

Published by: Anthony Wallace


The_Witch_posterSet in the 1660’s is the story about a family who after leaving their plantation goes out to live in the outskirts of New England. When their baby, Sam, is taken from their parish an unruly force takes over the family that begins to slowly tear them apart. The film is directed by Robert Eggers and stars Kate Dickie, Anya-Taylor Joy, and Ralph Ineson.

It’s been a long while since watching a film that is genuinely unsettling but to also find it refreshing at the same time. This time around we’re talking about ‘The Witch‘ and having viewed the trailer this past month I was eagerly looking forward to seeing it. To describe this movie is nothing but unsettling and the credit goes out to the director who was able to hone in the suspense not knowing where the movie would go next. Now I have to warn everyone in saying that this isn’t your typical horror film with big budget effects and cheap jump scares forced down your throats. Instead you are treated to a time piece that sets the tone with events that took place in old folklore and a time where witchcraft was believed to exist. So for some viewers this may not rub off so well and could turn them away if your not knowing what to expect. With that said, this is not one to be overlooked.

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I thoroughly enjoyed this film not only because it went away from the typical tropes of a horror film but the background and history that was put into the making of the film. There were scenes in ‘The Witch‘ that were genuinely terrifying; especially with the background music to go along with it. One could even look at the film as a piece of art where dialogue isn’t totally necessary as the events and images are what drives the movie. There are a couple of scenes that stood out to me and one of them had to do with the taking of the baby. It’s what happens after the baby is taken that we are introduced to the witch herself. We’ll just leave it at that and everyone will have to see it for themselves. The other scene happens towards the middle of the movie where it involves a sick child that you truly sense that the evil is present.

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We get to see Kate Dickie play the role of the Katherine who reels from the loss of her baby. She does an exceptional job along with her co-stars who battle to stay united as evil lurks the grounds they live on. Anya-Taylor Joy, who plays the adopted daughter Thomasin, does an amazing job as she is the one character who everyone suspects is a witch. She does everything she can to prove everyone wrong but in the end takes a turn for the worse. The very last scene we see of Thomasin is one that will have everyone talking and is terrifying all in itself.

From a technical standpoint the movie is gorgeous to look at as the director put in a lot of the effort to making this a time piece. Along with the dialogue and setting you really get the sense of what it was like for New England as they battled the talks of witches. The score accompanies the movie with tension and terror when something horrifying takes place. Having been his directorial debut, Robert Eggers does an excellent job with promise that he can produce good quality horror movies should he go that route. This is by far one of the best horror films we’ve seen thus far this year. If you are a looking for a horror film that will get under you skin this will surely do it. It’s a time piece that can’t be overlooked.

Rating: 8/10

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What do you guys think? Do you plan on watching ‘The Witch‘? Comment below and share your thoughts. If you enjoyed reading this review please click the like button to show your support.

New ‘Purge’ trailer promises a Government showdown…

Published by: Anthony Wallace


the-purge-election-year-PG3_Tsr1Sht11_RGB_0128_1SM_rgbAfter a two year hiatus and a project that almost didn’t see the day of light, Universal returns with ‘The Purge: Election Year‘. Frank Grillo returns to action as this time he is part of a security team looking to protect a government official as Purge operatives look to stop anyone from ending the annual tradition (View trailer down below). The trailer looks intense as we’re looking to go deeper as to who is pulling the strings as the New Founding Fathers took over the government. Grillo’s character will surely be prepared this time as his previous Purge took him all throughout the city while almost avenging his son’s killer.

The Purge franchise took everyone by surprise as ‘The Purge: Anarchy‘ righted many of the wrongs in the original. With making over $112 million* world-wide, Universal saw another sequel happening down the road. A sequel was quickly announced when ‘Anarchy‘ finished it’s opening weekend; however, time went by when little to nothing was moving in a direction for a release. It wasn’t until Frank Grillo agreed to return to the series that a script was readily available. Now with only five months to go before ‘Election Year‘ releases that the anticipation is set.

What do you guys think? Are you looking forward to ‘The Purge: Election Year‘? Comment below and share your thoughts. And click the like button if you enjoyed reading this post.

Source: Box Office Mojo

The Boy (2016) Review

Published by: Anthony Wallace


MV5BMTc1MjcxNzcwMV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMTE0NTE2NzE@._V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_AL_When a new nanny arrives at the Heelshire home, Greta Evans discovers she won’t be taking care of any ordinary child. In this case, Brahms, a doll that the Heelshires believe is their son. Soon after they leave, Greta begins to suspect that Brahms isn’t just a doll and soon questions her sanity as to believe that Brahms is really alive. The film is directed by William Brent Bell and stars ‘The Walking Dead‘s own Lauren Cohen and Rupert Evans.

I was a little curious going into ‘The Boy‘ because I thought the trailer peaked my interest with the idea of a doll being disguised as someone’s own child. Then another part of me went into the movie thinking that this would end up like all doll films. After viewing the film all of my expectations came true, however, a twist followed that I’m not sure if I saw coming or not. It was nice to see Lauren Cohen be in a horror film; especially from her successes on television. The one thing that I thought worked well was her character and how she wasn’t written as your typical go against the rules idiot. There were times she grew attached to Brahms and could relate to the family’s loss when Brahms died in a fire. Then there were other times when she didn’t know how to approach the whole situation seeing as how she’s interacting with a doll and not a real person.

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One of the few positives I’ll give was how the movie looked. Having that old Victorian home and the interior design gave the movie that edginess feel. And props to the creators of the doll and how they made Brahms seem so real from what he looked like in character form. The parents, played by Jim Norton and Diana Hardcastle, were great as they tended to Brahms and nurtured him as if he were still alive. And the normalcy they were to the situation made you feel for them in some way. This again would tie nicely with Cohen’s character of Greta when she relates her story to Brahms.

At this point in the review is where things go downhill. Going into the movie I had mentioned that I may or may not have expected something to happen. Believe it or not, when the twist is revealed at the end, my gut feeling was right. And for a second your like oh this works and it caught me off guard. But the next second your disappointed because the twist isn’t executed effectively as it should have. And after thinking about it more after leaving the theater you wish to think maybe they should’ve gone away with the twist altogether. And if I continue on with my explanation things will get spoiled so it will be left at that.

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We must mention Rupert Evans as the Heelshire’s grocery man, Malcolm. He was decent and had good chemistry with Lauren Cohen. He may not have had a major role but his curiosity and intrigue in the story behind Brahms helped to give Greta better insight into what may actually be taking place. Surprisingly enough, the movie doesn’t go outside of the home very much. One of the possible reasons being that it was on a low budget of $10 million*. And by having a PG-13 rating the studio is sure to get more of a return on investment as the movie is clearly targeted for the younger audience.

In the end, ‘The Boy‘ struggles to identify whether it wants to be a horror film or a straight up thriller. With the twist at the end it becomes more clear that the movie was confused in what it actually wanted to be. There are some genuine jumps here and there but primarily it’s left to the imagination as to whether or not Brahms is real or not. And for the first two-thirds of the movie it was effective but then it falls into cliche territory with not much explained.

Rating: 5/10

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What do you guys think? Do you plan to watch ‘The Boy‘? Comment below and share your thoughts.

*Source: Box Office Mojo

The Revenant (2015) Review

Published by: Anthony Wallace


the-revenant-2015-2It technically may have been released back in 2015 but it makes its way in full release this January. Director Alejandro Iñárritu, who was acclaimed for the visually pleasing ‘Birdman‘, returns in a story of revenge and survival. When left to die following a bear attack and seeing his son get murdered, a Frontier man, Hugh Glass, fights his way back to get revenge on the man who took everything away from him. The film sees Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy team together in putting a dramatic and intense effort that pays off in so many ways.

There is so much to like about ‘The Revenant‘ that Alejandro Iñárritu continues to impress not just by the story but the ride you take. Leonardo DiCaprio’s performance was excellent as your invested in his character who already had lost so much to then lose the one thing that mattered most. Alongside DiCaprio is Tom Hardy who plays the character of John Fitzgerald who is more concerned about himself then the well being of others. Even though Hardy’s performance wasn’t at the forefront of the film you still are invested in his character who is only to be despised throughout.

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Aside from the performances we also have to talk about the cinematography cause the movie looked gorgeous. Emmanuel Lubezki, who also did the camera work for ‘Birdman’, also returned to take our breath away by the amazing scenery. Filming took place in Calgary, Alberta, Canada where the flow of the rivers and the rocky mountain tops found dangers from all corners for Glass. Even the location of filming was a character in itself because of the natural beauty and attention put on water streams, snow, and the trees as we saw Glass battle his way for survival.

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One of the things I enjoyed most about ‘The Revenant‘ was that it pulls you in from beginning to end; especially in the opening moments. The scene where Glass gets attacked by the grizzly bear your just imaging how horrifying it would be to be in his place and the brutality that follows. His injuries were hard to watch at times but you couldn’t look away because of DiCaprio’s character’s willingness to fight back. The moments he felt helpless you wanted to see him get back on his feet. The climactic showdown towards the end made the journey all but worth it and more. Together with the performances from Hardy and DiCaprio, ‘The Revenant‘ is a pleaser of a movie and is gorgeous to watch.

In what definitely could be an Oscar performance for Leonardo DiCaprio, ‘The Revenant’ is a thrilling experience. Iñárritu pulls it off once again and can only make one look forward to his next project. Go see ‘The Revenant‘.

Rating: 8/10

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What do you guys think? Have you or are planning to watch the movie? Comment below and tell us your thoughts.