The Ballad of Buster Scruggs review “A western with a twist”

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs posterThe Wild West. Full of outlaws, cowboys and guns, this has been a topic of many a blockbuster movie. However, Netflix’s latest release, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, is a western with a twist. Comprised of six separate stories, this movie explores many aspects of the Wild West, without just focussing on the shooting part.

The movie follows a variety of characters, as well as the titular Buster Scruggs. We see them as they begin many adventures, fight a lot of random people, and perform a lot of boring shows. With a stellar cast, a few laughs and a pair of veteran directors, this movie seems like it’s on to a winner. Continue reading

The Sisters Brothers review “A slow burn that never lights”

The Sisters Brothers movie posterJoaquin Phoenix, John C. Reilly, Riz Ahmed, and Jake Gyllenhaal all in a comedy-western, directed by Jacques Audiard which was given fantastic reviews and an amazing trailer sounds like it should combine to make one of the best movies of 2018, right?

I saw this on the film’s opening day in a surprisingly empty theatre and was extremely excited as it had been delayed by weeks. I patiently watched as the trailers and opening credits rolled by, with an entire screen filled with all the production companies moved past to the opening scene. Now, I haven’t seen many westerns, but the ones I have I really enjoy. Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight are fantastic films, both of which I own on Blu-Ray. However, with The Sisters Brothers, I was severely disappointed, and let me discuss why. Continue reading

“A letter to Antoine Fuqua” The Magnificent Seven review

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The Magnificent Seven review: by Rob Stoakes

UK certification: 12A

Dear Antoine Fuqua,

Mr Fuqua, or may I call you Antoine? Tony? I don’t know why I’m asking, you can’t respond to me. Tony, we need to talk. It’s about your movies. They’re not very good.

Now, technically, I will say that you’re competent. You know how to frame a shot clearly and carefully and all of the information the audience needs is clearly on screen at any given time, which in this day and age is a massive compliment. No, really, it is; you know that action scenes and actors should carry an audience’s attention without needing to be enhanced by dizzying, rubbish shaky cam. Continue reading

“More N-words than a dictionary” The Hateful Eight review

THE HATEFUL EIGHT (UK Cert  18)

Director: Quentin Tarantino

Music: Ennio Morricone

Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh


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By Rob Stoakes

It’s probably not controversial to say Quentin Tarantino is a very strange creature.

He so perfectly fits the mold of the director who creates work filled with blood, boobs and racial slurs and insists “no no no, it’s ok because it’s satire!” or “I’m just pushing your boundaries!” that of course you’d lump him in with the likes of Eli Roth and his other imitators. Especially when you hear him in interviews or see him try to act like a total badass to paparazzi. Watch that infamous 106 Spark interview again; Tarantino should never be allowed to speak to black people again after that. Continue reading