Author Archive: cook.ashley

rss feed

Saw IV

Saw IV

| October 29, 2007

When the first Saw become surprisingly successful, a psychological horror film along the lines of Se7en, there wasn’t a single moviegoer who thought a sequel would be a good idea. And yet, something in the slick design of the film’s gruesome horror sequences (gimmicks like those from Final Destination, but far more plausible in their […]

Sunshine

Sunshine

| July 22, 2007

Sunshine may be a science-fiction flick, but its core is that of a natural disaster on par with Deep Impact, and the emotion is right up there with that of the similarly claustrophobic and aesthetically pleasing independent, Cube. It’s a merging of the kinds of big-budget special effects that make a tidal wave of solar […]

Meatball Machine

Meatball Machine

| July 8, 2007 | 0 Comments

Meatball Machine is a splatterpunk reimagining of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, shot with the patented cinematography of a shaky YouTube video, and with little care for lighting or particularly realistic blood. The film is streaked and splattered with this laughable gore at every turn, and is a bitter triumph of style over substance. Not much […]

×
Chalk

Chalk

| May 31, 2007

Pop those books back open; it’s time to go back to school, a place where time is recorded by the weeks, days, minutes, and seconds to the next holiday. Chalk has none of the dry, cough-inducing dangers of its subject: instead, Mike Akel’s docucomedy is a nice, intentionally awkward look at how teachers cope with […]

Tribeca Film Festival – 2007

Tribeca Film Festival – 2007

| May 12, 2007 | 0 Comments

Day 1 Well, this is another fine mess you’ve gotten me into, dear reader. Over 150 films and only eight days to see them all in. Using my careful “index” methodology (turn program guide, place finger down, see film), I’ve come up with a refreshing mix of not just the artsy Narrative films in this […]

×
300

300

| March 14, 2007 | 0 Comments

300 is the latest in a series of a new genre that I call “animated realism.” Breakthroughs in filmmaking and special effects now allow for comic book adaptations that match the visual flair and nuances of their source material. Not just films like Sin City (which Frank Miller also wrote and stylized) but works like […]

Tribeca Film Festival – 2007 – Preview

Tribeca Film Festival – 2007 – Preview

| February 22, 2007 | 0 Comments

Welcome back to Tribeca, folks; what that means for you is that there’s two weeks to catch over 150 films; what that means for me is that I’ve got eight days to see over twenty-five movies. For those of you who don’t know what Tribeca is, it’s the ever-expanding film festival centered in New York […]

×
Pan’s Labyrinth

Pan’s Labyrinth

| January 8, 2007 | 0 Comments

A brilliant and seamless juxtaposition of dark fantasy with harsh reality, Guillermo del Toro’s El Laberinto del Fauno (Pan’s Labyrinth) is his best film yet. Beautifully chilling and enchantingly heartbreaking, Guillermo shows us that escapism doesn’t always let you escape and that monsters are more frightening in the real world than through the rabbit hole. […]

×
Children of Men

Children of Men

| December 27, 2006

From the naturalism of Y tu mamá también to the dark fantasy of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azakban, Alfonso Cuarón has always been a vivid director, with shots so tight they hug off the screen and angles so crisp they demand every ounce of tension from a scene. His latest film, Children of […]

×
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

| November 16, 2006 | 0 Comments

How did a 1985 German gothic horror novel gain attention enough to warrant a film? That story, one that would reveal how German auteur Tom Twyker (of Run Lola Run) got involved, would be more interesting than the overly stylized urban fantasy that is Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. Strictly as a period piece, […]

×