Every director has their hits and misses, and Neill Blomkamp is no exception. After exploding on the scene with his revelatory 2009 alien movie District 9, all eyes were on Blomkamp. He followed up with rumors about Halo and Alien movies, and two middling sci-fi films in 2013 and 2015, Elysium and Chappie. Both were blasted by critics and received tepid reactions at the box office, but only the criticism to one still stings Blomkamp to this day: Chappie.
Chappie was an intensely personal film for Blomkamp, and one that he came out of believing that he had nailed the vision he had for this film. So he was shocked by the scathing reviews, and he revealed that they still haunt him two years later.
Read More »
There’s more than meets the eye with some of the characters in Free Fire. They can reveal shades of humanity you wouldn’t immediately expect at the start of Ben Wheatley‘s action-comedy. Some characters, on the other hand, like Vernon (Sharlto Copley), can be chalked up to “what you see is what you get.”
That’s not the case with Justine, played by Academy Award winner Brie Larson (Room), who is calmer than most during Wheatley’s 85-minute shootout. Justine tries to keep others from losing their heads as hers remains firmly planted on her shoulders.
Wheatley’s movie is contained and set mostly in one location, but it still leaves you with a sense of who the characters are outside of the abandoned warehouse. We recently sat down with Larson and discussed what sort of person Justine is outside of the film, what it’s like shooting in chronological order, and more. Spoilers for the film lie ahead.
Read More »
If you’re lucky, this weekend brings the action shoot’em up flick Free Fire to a theater near you. It’s the latest film from High Rise and Sightseers director Ben Wheatley. But don’t worry if you think the filmmaker’s work is a little too weird or twisted for your tastes, because this is easily his most accessible film yet.
Free Fire follows a black market arms deal gone wrong in 1970s Boston as an IRA buyer (Cillian Murphy) and a South African gun runner (Sharlto Copley) end up in a gun fight in the middle of an abandoned warehouse, with both their sides exchanging shots, trying to get the money and attempting to make it out alive. It’s relentlessly brutal, but it’s also extremely funny, as evidenced by a new clip from the movie that will probably make District 9 fans grin a bit.
Watch the Free Fire clip below. Read More »
This year has already brought us the brutal gunplay of John Wick: Chapter 2, but there’s another shootout on the way this spring.
Free Fire is the latest film from director Ben Wheatley (High Rise, Sightseers, Kill List), and it looks like his most accessible, too. Sharlto Copley, Armie Hammer, Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy, Noah Taylor, Sam Riley, Michael Smiley and Jack Reynor all find themselves in a grimy warehouse with a weapons deal gone wrong, resulting in a feature-length shootout that is just as hilarious as it is energetic and wild.
Watch the new Free Fire trailer below to see what we’re talking about, but beware that there’s some NSFW language in this one. Read More »
Posted on Friday, September 9th, 2016 by Angie Han
The third-act shootout is a staple of a certain kind of film, but in Ben Wheatley‘s Free Fire it’s essentially the entire movie. Against all odds, it works. Wheatley stages a never-ending knock-down-drag-out fight, trapping one woman and about a dozen men in an abandoned warehouse and then inviting us to sit back and watch as the bullets and the jokes ricochet off one another. The result is a furiously entertaining exercise that left me buzzing with energy long after I’d left the theater. Read More »
Posted on Friday, September 9th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
The impending arrival of new Ben Wheatley movie is always a cause for celebration. The genius (yes, I’ll break out the “G” word) behind films like Kill List, Sightseers, and High-Rise has been a favorite of mine for years, leaping between genres while maintaining his signature dark comedy and unflinching ability to sell genuine pain and terror. His new film, Free Fire, is built around a premise that is simultaneously old school and high concept: two groups of criminals in 1970s Boston arrange an arms deal in an old warehouse, things go south, guns are drawn…and they proceed to engage in a gun battle that plays out over the course of the entire movie, mostly in real time.
The first Free Fire trailer has arrived (in bloody, NSFW red band form!) and you can check it out below.
Read More »
The Toronto International Film Festival is in full swing, and with it comes teases of some of the movies playing at the Canadian film showcase. Today we have a NSFW glimpse of a sci-fi action movie called Hardcore, which was shot entirely from a first-person perspective, not unlike a live-action video game.
Executive produced by Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted) and written/directed by Russian filmmaker Ilya Naishuller, the first Hardcore trailer has arrived before the film’s premiere, and this looks like an absolutely insane movie, complete with telekinesis, naked girls, tons of gunfire, explosions and a lot of crazy fun. Read More »
Earlier this summer, we featured a very brief look at the visual effects that helped bring Neill Blomkamp‘s futuristic fairytale Chappie to life. A live performance on set was done with Sharlto Copley (District 9), and then the actor was replaced entirely with visual effects, and now we get to see just how perfectly the effects mirror Copley’s performance.
Watch the Chappie visual effects breakdown after the jump! Read More »
Cool Posts From Around the Web:
Even though this year’s sci-fi flick Chappie may not have been anywhere near as poignant or impressive as director Neill Blomkamp‘s previous effort District 9, you can’t deny that the film has some unbelievable special effects.
Bringing the titular artificially intelligent robot to life is quite a feat, and it was done with a combination of visual effects and a live-action reference performance by Sharlto Copley. With Chappie arriving on Blu-Ray and DVD on June 16th, a short new featurette has popped up with some cool before-and-after shots of Copley acting on set in a body suit and battery pack placed side-by-side with the finished visual effects shot from the movie.
Check out the Chappie special effects wizardly after the jump! Read More »
Posted on Thursday, March 5th, 2015 by Angie Han
Following the Oscar-nominated District 9, Neill Blomkamp’s sophomore effort Elysium proved a major disappointment. Even Blomkamp himself knows it, and his recent admission that he “fucked it up” by pressing ahead with a script that “just wasn’t there” seemed like an encouraging step in the right direction.
But acknowledging your mistakes isn’t the same thing as figuring out how to avoid them. Unfortunately, Chappie indicates that, like the childlike protagonist that gives the film its name, Blomkamp still has a lot to learn. Read our full Chappie review after the jump. Read More »