Sunday, 16 March 2014

Film Reviews - Drive & Only God Forgives Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn

DRIVE (2011)

All this driver wanted was a normal life, but it's not that simple. 
Review: When I initially saw the television spots for this film when it was first released I wasn't interested at all, because it just seemed like one of those Fast and furious, action, racing-car type movies so I didn't go to see it. But this year I saw some other people's reviews and critics opinions online saying that it wasn't that type of film at all , so I decided to give it a try and wow, boy am I a fan of Nicolas Winding Refn now. This film is beautifully executed, well paced, the story's fantastic with great acting.  I had just recently got into 80's Synth movie music from those awesome 80's cheese movies and games like "Hotline Miami" and "Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon", this movie works with this genre of music, I love it and also a great score by Cliff Martinez, with atmosphere, tension and slow Synth music. People have been put off by the violence, saying that it's not necessary, which I think is not true at all,  the violence is there for a deep meaning and to promote the story. Another thing that's great about this movie is that it takes it's time to tell it's story,  which  gives this film a good tense mood to each scene. You don't know which way the scene will go, so you're fixed to the screen wondering how each sequence will end.
^^Here's an example^^ 
Plot: Drive is the story of a Hollywood stunt driver by day (Ryan Gosling), a loner by nature, who moonlights as a top-notch getaway driver-for-hire in the criminal underworld. He finds himself a target for some of LA's most dangerous men after agreeing to aid the husband of his beautiful neighbor, Irene (Carey Mulligan). When the job goes dangerously awry, the only way he can keep Irene and her son alive is to what he does best -Drive! 

Verdict: Drive is an excellent Drama/ Action film in that order. Watching the main character's downward spiral of trying to be the good person/ hero he's always wanted to be makes us feel sorry for him, but he has a perfect pay off in the end which I wont give away. This film gets a 9.5/ 10 a near perfect score, any film that makes me buy the main characters jacket, to look like him, is a good film in my book. If you haven't seen this film already and you want more than just an all out action movie, then definitely go and watch this.


Either love this film or hate it, Ryan Gosling still wants a fight!

Review: As if "Drive" didn't have enough problems, like getting sued for not having enough action in it, (Yes that actually happened!) plus getting people on the same wave length as the Director. This film has the critics and general movie goers split right down the middle. What most people complain about is the pacing of the film, saying it's too slow.  Granted for being a 90 minute movie, it did feel  a bit longer, but not that long, for it to be unbearable like some say. I have to admit I watched it twice to get the ending down, but much like the game "Bioshock: Infinite" the clue is in the title.  I now have a greater knowledge of why the movie is what it is and more respect for the characters and story. Again the soundtrack is composed by Cliff Martinez with great atmospheric orchestration, but being set in Bangkok it also has a few Thai karaoke songs which many didn't like, but I thought they were good , catchy and served a purpose to the story. This is probably one of the strangest films I've seen, other than "Eraserhead" but it's fascinating to watch.  For me, much like Drive, I was always wondering what would happen next. Violence makes the story for this film even more so than in "Drive" and is even more necessary because of the subject matter, the locaction it's based in, and the culture that surrounds the movie. One thing I didn't mention for both films is the cinematography, it's incredible, even more so in "Only God Forgives", and it works brilliantly with the Thai neon lighting. 

^^Here's the trailer for the film^^

Plot: Julian (Ryan Gosling) runs a boxing club in Bangkok as a front for a drugs operation. He has everything he wants for until his brother is murdered, and his mother (Kristin Scott Thomas)  the head of a powerful criminal organization, arrives to collect her son's body. Furious with grief, she dispatches Julian to find his killers and "raise hell". The stage is set for a bloody journey of betrayal and vengeance towards a final confrontation and the possibility of redemption.       

Verdict: I admire this film for its challenge to tell a narrative so different from most cinematic experiences.  It's one of those movies that will talked about for a long time. Unfortunately, people are too quick to dismiss this film as confusing, slow or even disturbing. Nicolas Winding Refn Created a masterpiece and people should experience this if they haven't already.  I found it hard to decide between this film and "Drive", but I give this film a 10/10, as it's my favourite movie by Nicolas Winding so far, and I look forward to seeing many more of his films in future. 

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Dream Steam Game Review - Dear Esther

  What can say that hasn't already been said about this game. A remake by the same indie game developers "The Chinese Room" with their award winning source mod that made in 2008, this 2012 released game is a ghost story made with a first person perspective. You are a man lost on a deserted Island with no idea of how you got there, only recollections of a fatal car crash and the characters narrations throughout the game addressing a certain person named "Esther". As you explore the island you uncover more information about these things but all seems unworldly with things like ghost sightings, unexplained dialects & diagrams painted on cliff sides, paper boats along rivers and luminescent caves will all appear throughout this journey you take.
  The game for me (if I can even call it that) is something I've never experienced before, its visually stunning, the voice acting is impressive and almost every part of the island has a different clue or hint to help the player understand why they are on this island. Another mention is the music that was created by Jessica Curry and  as soon as I heard that music I had to get it, with a beautiful but sad and almost ghostly like piano score. Overall I give this indie game a 9.5/10 as it's a near perfect game and hope that the creators continue to make games as successful as this one, selling more that 50,000 units in one week you can't beat those odds and at a great price of £6.99 on Steam I say go now and get if you haven't already.          

 *Screenshots of the game*

^^Trailer For the Game^^ 

Monday, 11 June 2012

Crazy Game Review: Shadows of the Damned is Magnifico!

Introduction and Impressions: Suda51/ Grasshopper Manufacture has gotten my attention with this game and Im glad it has because this game is, if you will excuse my french "Fucking Insane". The game only cost me around £12 to get, so like "Deadly Premonition" it was a bargain!  I got it for the PS3. Shadows of the Damned delivers in a way only a crazy Japanese game can.. Demons, guns, hot chicks, sexual innuendo's and of course piss & flaming turds. The gameplay is a third person overhead shooter with  similar but slightly improved gameplay to "Resident Evil 4"  this might help the fact that the "Resident Evil" series director Shinji Mikami helped produce the game. Your main weapon is a gun called "The Boner"  which is like your handgun styled weapon. You also have "The Teether" which is the machine-gun and "The Monocussioner" which is the heavy weapon and you get upgrades for health and weapons as the game goes on.

  ^^Garcia Hotspur and his girl Paula^^

The Story:  When demon hunter Garcia Hotspur comes home to find his girlfriend named Paula being taken  by the "Lord of the demons" named Flemming. He takes her away saying that he will kill her over and over again, which really pisses Garcia off. So the demon hunter takes a trip to hell with his torch, gun and motorbike flaming skull that talks.. yep that's right that's all in one .. sidekick named  Johnson. So they set off to save Paula destroying demons and other foul beasts on the way.

 ^^Johnson turning into "The Boner"^^

Overall: Again like Deadly Premonition I don't think certain people would enjoy this type of humor or the overall game, but I would still recommend people to try it out. It's one of those game where you've just got to leave your brain at the door. My final words are even though its a little too short and I wished it wouldn't end! This game is a hardcore rocking, fun, twisted piece of humor that I enjoyed and will continue to enjoy over and over again, the gameplay, Levels, references and Music by Akira Yamaoka are all fantastic and thats why Shadows of the Damned gets a 9.5/10

^^A Trailer For the game^^

Friday, 15 July 2011

Crazy Game Review: Deadly Premonition is a 10/10 game

Introduction and Impressions: Well I can honestly say that "Deadly Premonition" has become one of my favourite games of all time, period! It doesn't need good gameplay, or great graphics to make it a good game. The Game Cost me about £13 and is on the Xbox 360. It gives an excellent story, great dialogue and cut-scenes to make it my number one game. The game itself borrows and references things from the drama show "Twin Peaks",  Ive never seen this show but playing this game it has made me curious and want to watch it.

The Story: The game gives the player control of an FBI agent named Francis York Morgan who is investigating the murder of a young woman, Anna Graham, near the fictional American town of Greenvale. Upon arriving in the town York is greeted by town sheriff George Woodman and his deputy Emily Wyatt, who briefs him on the murder and lead him to the crime scene. York generates considerable friction with his dismissive attitude toward the locals, bizarre demeanor, and tendency to interrupt conversations to deliver asides to "Zach", an alternate personality congruent with the player. Over the course of his investigation, York has opportunities to touch the lives of many of the town's colorful personalities and intervene in their personal crises, often brought on by the sudden and brutal murder in their midst, to earn rewards and further his understanding of the case. As he unearths more and more mysteries and the killer continues to roam, the town's dark past, as well as York's own past, slowly come to light. - Wikipedia

Overall: Deadly Premonition is a fun and enjoyably hilarious game that has a great story, dialogue and music. I would recommend this game to anyone just to try, I tend to think of it in two was in that it's like Marmite-"you either love it, or hate it." or that it's like one of those B-movie styled films in the way that you know it's silly and over the top but its fun and an enjoyable experience. 10/10

^^Funny Gif of a glitch in the game ^^

^^Examples of the great cutscenes in the game^^