The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Review




Directed by Peter Jackson

Starring Martin Freeman, Cate Blanchett and Ian McKellen

When a mysterious wizard arrives at his door, Bilbo Baggins is uprooted from his snug Hobbit hole and thrown into an adventure of a lifetime. Flanked by 13 dwarves, the company embark upon a quest to regain their homeland from the dragon Smaug, all the while an ominous presence is starting to rear its head in Middle Earth.

The film opens in the sunnier days of the Shire we know and love. 48 frames per second bring an incredible amount of detail to an already rich scene from the offset; you can make out every leaf with dizzying clarity. It has to be said, as the film progresses there are more and more gratuitous 3D moments that really are pointless if you are watching it 2D or (in future) on DVD. However, The Hobbit is perhaps more beautiful and sharp than its predecessors, the scenes in Rivendell are breathtaking.  

There is a certain amount of nostalgia in The Hobbit which is natural; old faces such as Ian McKellen, Cate Blanchett and even the protuberant blue eyes of Elijah Wood earmark The Hobbit as a definite prequel. But in the mean time there is plenty of fresh meat which provides The Hobbit with ample character in its own right. Martin Freeman could not be more perfect as a young Bilbo. Kind natured, brave hearted and plucky, he is a joy to watch.

In some respects it is nice that The Hobbit is set to become another great trilogy but part of me questions why this short book needs to be drawn out over three films. Obviously it is a great money spinning deal, however time will tell if the story has been drawn and padded out in a way which is unsatisfactory. You could probably read Tolkien’s The Hobbit in less time than it will take to watch the 3 films. But then again, while The Hobbit is a prequel to The Lord of The Rings, it is significantly different in tone and style. Something which Jackson has noted and ran with. One of the finest scenes of the movie is the exchange between Sméagol/Gollum and Bilbo when the one ring is thrown into the mix. Jackson manages to capture a balance between quirky humour and genuine danger; it’s what makes The Hobbit so perfect for a family audience. The sophisticated, epic nature of Lord of The Rings may be missing, but The Hobbit more than makes up for this in other areas.

There are some moments that seem to have little to do with the main plot (such as a sledge ride through a forest with a brown Wizard) but for the most part The Hobbit is a thrilling cat and mouse chase with a heart warming climax. Freeman’s Bilbo shows a remarkable amount of growth and has already soared through one great character arc. Considering this is the first in a trilogy, there is enough brilliance here to make us genuinely excited for The Desolation of Smaug. To all cinemas goers; it’s good to be back in Middle Earth…
Rating: 7

Prada - Actors S/S 2013

Prada have revealed an all star cast modelling their S/S 2013 line. Scroll down for pictures of Aaron Johnson, Dane DeHaan, Harvey Keitel and Benicio De Torro looking dapper in these black and white portraits...

Project X - Review




Directed by Nima Nourizadeh

Starring Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper, Jonathan Daniel-Brown

When Thomas’ parents leave town for their anniversary weekend, his best friend decides to throw him a Birthday party in the house. Welcome to the age of smart phones and internet! What was supposed to me a small high school party quickly spirals out of control into absolute carnage. You know the party scenes in movies that last a couple of minutes and that’s it? Well Project X is what it would be like if it was extended for an hour: madness.
Don’t think for a second that this is going to be anything other than wild, untamed and vacuous partying; because that’s precisely what it is. It’s unapologetic in its approach. Filmed in the hand held style, Project X threatens to undo some of the hard work Chronicle did with that genre. It’s unfair to utter these films in the same breath however they do share some similarities. Where Chronicle succeeds and Project X falls short is that the dialogue matches up with the filming style, as the lines in Chronicle encapsulate a natural teen dialect. Project X on the other hand uses that home movie style, but the script hasn’t adapted to it, and the dialogue is not believably natural.
With that said, anyone who tries to review this film in the same way you would a film like Chronicle is already onto a loser. This is because Project X is essentially one massive music video of the party you always wished you could have. It’s obvious that the demographic is teenage girls and boys who will resonate with the sheer brat-like nature of the boys. I read a review of how Project X lacked the heart and wider message of Superbad, I’m not trying to say for a second that real people lack heart, but they’re not the caricatures depicted in Superbad, and I can very much believe that boys would throw a party motivated by popularity and getting laid. But in some respects the film does shy away, it could go a lot further at times, and it doesn’t which is a shame.

This film is not a cinematic masterpiece by any means, but a lot of people find it entertaining, funny and enjoyed it; why should that be frowned upon? Let’s face it, the film is an 18, but the kids watching it will be younger than that and will think it’s cool. To call it the worst film of recent years is horrendously extreme. Make no mistake, this film is for the kids, you need a sense of humour; no ones trying to say this will happen at the house next door.

The soundtrack of this film is immense; if you want a party playlist, buy the OST. This won’t be the last we see of Thomas Mann; and quite frankly that’s not a bad thing.
Rating 5.5

Golden Globes: Nominations

Awards season is officially beginning (eeeeeeek!) and here are the film nominations for The Golden Globes. The TV nominations have been left out of this particular post but let's face it, most of us are only interested in the films (or at least, I am).
Best Motion Picture - Drama
  • Argo
  • Lincoln
  • Life of Pi
  • Django Unchained
  • Zero Dark Thirty

Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy
  • The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
  • Les Miserables
  • Moonrise Kingdom
  • Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
  • Silver Linings Playbook
Best Director
  • Ben Affleck, Argo
  • Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty
  • Ang Lee, Life of Pi
  • Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
  • Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
  • Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
  • Richard Gere, Arbitrage
  • John Hawkes, The Sessions
  • Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
  • Denzel Washington, Flight

Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
  • Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
  • Jack Black, Bernie
  • Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
  • Bill Murray, Hyde Park on Hudson
  • Ewan McGregor, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama
  • Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
  • Marion Cotillard, Rust and Bone
  • Helen Mirren, Hitchcock
  • Naomi Watts, The Impossible
  • Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea

Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
  • Emily Blunt, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
  • Judi Dench, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
  • Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
  • Maggie Smith, Quartet
  • Meryl Streep, Hope Springs

Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
  • Alan Arkin, Argo
  • Leonard DiCaprio, Django Unchained
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
  • Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
  • Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained

Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
  • Amy Adams, The Master
  • Sally Field, Lincoln
  • Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
  • Helen Hunt, The Sessions
  • Nicole Kidman, The Paperboy

Best Screenplay
  • Mark Boal, Zero Dark Thirty
  • Tony Kushner, Lincoln
  • David O. Russell, Silver Livings Playbook
  • Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
  • Chris Terrio, Argo
Best Original Score
  • Mychael Danna, Life of Pi
  • Alexandre Desplat, Argo
  • Dario Marianelli, Anna Karenina
  • Tom Tykwer, Johnny Klimek and Reinhold Heil, Cloud Atlas
  • John Williams, Lincoln
Best Original Song
  • For You (music and lyrics by Keith Urban)
  • Act of Valor; Not Running Anymore (music and lyrics by Jon Bon Jovi), Stand Up Guys
  • Safe & Sound (music and lyrics by Taylor Swift, John Paul White, Joy Williams and T Bone Burnett), The Hunger Games
  • Skyfall (music and lyrics by Adel and Paul Epworth), Skyfall
  • Suddenly (music by Claude-Michel Schonberg and lyrics by Schonberg and Alain Boublil), Les Miserables

Best Foreign Language Film
  • Amour
  • A Royal Affair
  • The Intouchables
  • Kon-Tiki
  • Rust and Bone

Les Miserables - Premiere

Just a few shots of the stars from the Les Mis New York premiere, although somehow a few pictures from the world premiere have ended up here too. Not sure about Hathaway's Tom Ford boots - however Redmayne's Burberry suit is the stuff of dreams...

Dior Advert

Slightly random post for today, but felt inspired to share this beautiful advert with you for two reasons. Firstly, the music is Sunshine (Adagio In D Minor) by John Murphy which feautured in our favourite soundtrack post from a while back. A beautiful peice of music from the Danny Boyle film, Sunshine. Secondly, the advert stars Charlize Theron. Enough said.