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Filmstalker's films for April 2011

Diary.jpgOh dear, I'm running a little late with the films for April, but don't fret, there's still half the month to go and plenty of Bank Holidays in the UK to head off to the cinema if it's raining, and we just know we aren't going to get good weather on the actual holidays.

Anyway it's a cracking year, and here are the reasons why, the films that Filmstalker recommends for April.

Sucker Punch (Filmstalker review)
Now it's nice that I'm a little late with this because I can get at least one of my reviews in. Sucker Punch looked and sounded great from the outset, but comments and reviews coming in have been mixed. I actually loved it and really would recommend going to see it. It's a feast of entertainment and excitement from the excellent Zack Snyder. Sucker Punch features a great cast, some amazing action sequences, and a good story to boot.

Source Code
The second feature from the director of Moon (Filmstalker review) and it looks like a superb idea, another slightly mind bending one but done in a completely accessible way, like Moon, and again with a strong and engaging cast. Duncan Jones looks like he's really setting a style and a standard that will set himself apart and deliver some great films.

I saw one trailer for this film, nothing else, and I was excited, a Bollywood film that is filled with style and carries an exciting story premise. Four strangers are invited to a private mansion by a wealthy recluse. There they discover that someone has been murdered and that three of them will be blamed for the murder with the investigative team arriving in the morning. That is if they don't figure their way out of it in the next few hours. The trailer looked fantastic, does the film?

Tomorrow, When the War Began
This is a film based on a series of novels which starts off with a group of teenagers heading off for a weekend's camping. During the trip they see airplanes flying overhead, it seems strange, but they don't think anything of it, until they return. When they get home they realise what the planes had meant, it was the beginning of an invasion of their country and they've been oblivious. They soon realise that they'll have to either give themselves up or fight, and they choose to fight. Sounds familiar? Well there's three to come and the remake of Red Dawn...familiar indeed.

Little White Lies
Writer and director Guillaume Canet had me interested from the outset, after all he wrote and directed Tell No One (Filmstalker review), and I enjoyed that thriller, and we were seeing the return of François Cluzet joined by Marion Cotillard. However this time we're getting a dramatic comedy which sees a group of friends getting together for a short holiday just as one of them is in a serious accident. This sets off a chain reaction amongst them and emotions are high, secrets are revealed, and pretences that have been there for years are suddenly gone. It sounds perfect French film territory and even better that Canet is behind it.

Scream 4
Oh I don't know, I still think the idea of handing the franchise over to a young team and basically replacing the cast for younger models seems a little daft, however the Scream universe is the perfect place to do this for it is a take-off of all the horror film conventions, and these days the remake/reboot/restart is fast becoming just another one of those clichés...I mean conventions. Still, I think it's a poor convention. Mind you, fair play to getting the original director and cast back again, for that's going to make a huge difference...isn't it?

Red Riding Hood
Oooh, imagine that, the director of Twilight making a film fantasy with a love triangle involving a creature and loads of good looking people? Okay, joking aside the trailers for Red Riding Hood make the film look a lot more adult than Twilight, and there's Amanda Seyfried, Gary Oldman, Virginia Madsen and Julie Christie, some great names in that cast, plus it's a new take on the whole Red Riding Hood story. However I keep thinking we're just going to see a more teen friendly version of The Village, and yes I did like that film.

Fast Five
Oh come now, I love the Fast and the Furious franchise - fast cars, beautiful people, huge action sequences and Vin Diesel being utterly cool. Tell me what's wrong with that, because if cinema's not about being entertained I don't know what is. Fast Five looks like it's going to deliver some of the biggest stunts to date in the franchise, and without the overly apparent CG for some of them, this looks practical, real, fast and the story giving them an almost impossible task. Start your engines...there better be an S2000 in there.

The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec
There are definite vibes of Indiana Jones here, some great fun action adventure wrapped up in a witty, stylish and old school hero, except here it's a woman, and not just any woman but one that began her adventures way back in 1972. The story sounds spectacular with police, criminals and mystical creatures and Luc Besson writing the adaptation and directing we're surely in for something special.

TT3D: Closer to the Edge
I only heard about this film recently when I saw the trailer and I was instantly taken by it. Loving fast bikes almost as much as fast cars, and seeing the reality of the race come through in the film I realised from the first few scenes I had to see this. TT3D may be in 3D, but there are many positives, in fact nothing but positives after that. This is a documentary looking at the Isle of Man TT races, where the country roads around the island are closed to allow bikes and riders to hurtle around the streets in a bid to be the fastest, perhaps one of the most dangerous races there is, the film explores the race, the people and looks set to provide some amazing and sobering footage.

I have free tickets to see this and I have to say I am not really that interested. I shall go and see it but I have no idea why there was a need or a desire to remake Arthur. Mind you Hollywood has attempted to trudge all over other great British comic actors such as Peter Sellers and failed miserably, so perhaps the same flop is destined for this attempt at remaking the excellent Arthur that originally starred the fantastic Dudley Moore. The casting choice doesn't set me alight either, and from what I've seen it's just the same but with more expensive play things around the character and much less intelligence to the story. I'll give it a go though, at least it'll be interesting to compare.

Kenneth Branagh directing a superhero film, who would have thought? I'm a huge fan of his work adapting and starring in Shakespearean plays and I really want to see him do more of them, however after seeing the footage for Thor I'm really excited, and somewhat surprised, this looks really pretty epic not to say action packed. There's a good chance Thor could turn out to be one of the best superhero films around, I'm certainly hopeful and yet to begin with I thought Thor just couldn't make it, I think I'm going to be very wrong.

The Veteran
Toby Kebbell plays a soldier returning from Afghanistan who gets involved between the intelligence services and the local drug gangs on his estate. The film also stars Brian Cox and Tony Curran and the trailer looks pretty solid, I just hope it doesn't fall into the usual story lines we've seen for such films.

I Saw the Devil
Jee-woon Kim directs Byung-hun Lee and Min-sik Choi in a film about an intelligence agent that finds his pregnant fiancée has become the latest victim of a serial killer. He sets out on a very twisted revenge that blurs the line between good and evil, between him and the killer. I was gutted to miss this at the Glasgow Film Festival this year, but my friends who did see it had very positive things to say, and the trailers have made the film look superb. This is a definite must see.

Ray Winstone plays a tracker, an ex-Boer war guerrilla, who is sent out to find a Maori, played by Temuera Morrison, who is accused of killing a British soldier. The film follows the tracker as he pits his skills against the man who is running for his life. What I've seen of the film so far looks interesting, and with Winstone in the lead there's all the reason I need to go and see the film.

What have you seen so far and what are you keen to see? Anything missing from the list?



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