UK

review sightseers

Editors’ note: Our Sightseers review originally ran during last year’s Fantastic Fest, but we’re re-posting it as the film gets a limited theatrical release starting today. The problem with making a truly fantastic film is that sooner or later you have to follow it up with a new movie. If it was your first then rumors will swirl about a sophomore slump, and if it’s your second then people will wonder if you can keep delivering the goods. Ben Wheatley‘s last film was the dark, brutal and highly acclaimed Kill List, and that in turn was a giant leap up from his debut, Down Terrace. Wheatley’s new movie is more of a jump sideways than up, but that’s actually even more impressive. Sightseers maintains the quality and effectiveness of Kill List even as it surprises with a constant stream of laugh out loud hilarity. Where his earlier movies featured darkly comic moments, this one is a flat out comedy… with gory murders. Has there ever been a love story as great as the one between Tina (Alice Lowe) and Chris (Steve Oram)? The answer is a resounding yes, but don’t tell that to these two sad-sack lovebirds. Tina is still reeling from the accidental death of her dog Poppy, but when her new beau Chris suggests the two of them take an RV trip across the English countryside she ignores her flatmate’s warnings and hits the road. It doesn’t hurt that her flatmate is her mother who constantly reminds Tina […]

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The residents of the Serenity House highrise are in a rough patch. Most of them are broke, the building’s meaner occupants are threatening and extorting the rest and now the owner is evicting everyone so the tower can be demolished. Crime in the building is at an all time high too with the most recent incident leading to the death of a young man while his neighbors listened in fear from behind their own locked doors in an ode to Kitty Genovese. As the final days wind down and the residents prepare to move only one floor remains occupied. And then the shooting starts. A sniper with a high powered rifle begins picking people off through exposed windows, and when they try to flee they find the elevators unresponsive, booby trapped doors and the exterior stairwells open to gunfire. Men, women and children are all fair game to the faceless killer, but a handful of them survive and make it to the hallway as a temporary refuge. Now it’s up to these formerly distant neighbors to work together with the hope of escaping the mysterious gunman’s sights. Tower Block sets an improbable premise for itself as it really wouldn’t be all that difficult to avoid a sniper located on just one side of a building, but it still manages to find suspense with the actions of and towards its eclectic group of neighbors and personalities.

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The Inbetweeners Movie

Continuing a television series onto the big screen with stories and stars intact can be a difficult prospect… just ask Mulder and Scully. There’s no guarantee moviegoers will know, remember or care about what these characters went through on TV, so you’re stuck with an important decision. Do you spend valuable feature time repeating or recreating that backstory, or do you just pick up where the show left off and hope viewers are willing to fill in the blanks? The Inbetweeners Movie is a continuation of the extremely popular UK series that ran for three successful seasons on E4. The show is about a quartet of friends muddling their way through their awkward high school years, and the film starts with their graduation. They decide a celebratory vacation is in order for their last summer together and plan a blowout trip to Spain in the hopes of drinking, dancing and shagging their way into adulthood. Shockingly, the trip doesn’t quite end up like they expected. Sadly, the movie follows suit. Character depth and nuance earned over three seasons on TV is nowhere to be found as all four lead characters seemingly revert back to the utterly clueless and often unlikeable dorks they were in the very first episode. Go into the movie with no knowledge of the show, and these guys are little more than pricks who occasionally get into funny situations. Go into it as a fan of the series, and you risk disappointment that what made the show […]

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For some people the great outdoors doesn’t get any more frightening than the 1988 Dan Aykroyd/John Candy film, but genre fans know that nature is filled with all manner of deadly terrors. From animals out to feast on your flesh to hillbillies out for the same (after they rape you of course) to the raw danger inherent in rough weather and terrain, the outdoors will kill you if given half the chance. The odds of survival grow even slimmer when you toss highly talented and motivated killers into the mix. A Lonely Place to Die sends five friends on a hiking and climbing trip in the Scottish mountains, but when they find a young Eastern European girl buried alive in the woods their collective vacation takes a turn for the nightmarish. The good Samaritans try to get her back down the mountain to the safety of town, but they quickly find themselves targeted by the two professional killers responsible for her captivity. What goes up must come down… some faster, harder, and deader than others.

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It seems like we’re talking a lot lately about psychology and what happens when a small group of people find themselves under stress in a small space. There’s the Experiment trailer that just came out – which sees men cast as guards and prisoners. There’s the Devil trailer that just came out which sees five strangers trapped in a busted up elevator with Satan. And now there’s the trailer for Exam. You guessed it: 8 people in a room vying for the same powerful job who are given 80 minutes to come up with the answer to an exam that has no question. Who will paper cut someone to death first?

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Heartless suffers from trying to do too much to the point where it accomplishes too little. What begins as an effective-looking thriller quickly drowns under the weight of personal drama, Faustian implications, social commentary, and an ultimately unsatisfying ending.

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Once again it’s time for After Dark Horrorfest, and just like last year Robert Fure refused to watch any of the releases from foreign lands. You’d think he would have grown or matured some in twelve months, but no, he still believes that foreign horror is inferior to our own domestic terrors.

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Once again it’s time for After Dark Horrorfest, and just like last year Robert Fure refused to watch any of the releases from foreign lands. You’d think he would have grown or matured some in twelve months, but no, he still believes that foreign horror is inferior to our own domestic terrors.

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Any horror film that has the balls to kill a kid gets a few extra points from me automatically. It doesn’t need to be a gory death, but the simple act of letting the child die acknowledges that kids have an expiration date and no one is safe in this movie. This week’s movie starts things off rather strong as a nosy, young paperboy is torn a new one in the woods…

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Red Riding is a trilogy of films from the UK about a series of serial killings that terrorized Northern England from the late sixties on into the eighties. Like Bong Joon-ho’s Memories of Murder and David Fincher’s Zodiac, Red Riding is just as (if not more) interested in the dark machinations of the men surrounding the case as it is the mystery itself.

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Doctor Who star David Tennant takes time away from his rounds at the TCA’s to tell our own Kevin Kelly all about his childhood dream of wearing that scarf.

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fo-mumanddad

The British are coming! The British are coming! Into a hacked-off chunk of human flesh… in this not-so delightful British romp about immigrant workers, insanity, airplanes, rape, cannibalism, murder, torture, and other family values.

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Andrew Garfield in Boy A

Foreign Objects travels the world of international cinema each week to highlight films worth visiting. So renew your passport, get your shots, and brush up on the local age of legal consent, this week we’re heading to… the UK!

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