Grim Pickings

Grim Pickings for Cinema & Home Entertainment this week…

19 July 2017

GRIM PICKINGS this week includes key dates to dismember with the theatrical release of visionary filmmaker Christopher Nolan’s latest while two behemoths of cinema battle it on home entertainment for your almighty dollar!

In Cinemas

Thursday July 20th
Visionary filmmaker Christopher Nolan returns with a World War II epic that rather surprisingly doesn’t carry with it an epic duration, running at a taut 106 minutes, DUNKIRK is true artistry in its perfect union of thrilling substance and sheer style. Opening as hundreds of thousands of British and Allied troops are surrounded by enemy forces. Trapped on the beach with their backs to the sea they face an impossible situation as the enemy closes in.

Friday July 21st – Sunday July 23rd
Adelaide genre fans will get a taste of Monster Pictures’ annual Melbourne-based genre film festival MONSTER FEST this Friday July 21st thanks to the continued partnership with Event Cinemas to present MONSTER FEST TRAVELLING SIDESHOW at GU Film House Adelaide. Kicking off with the Adelaide premiere of the definitive Radio Birdman documentary, DESCENT INTO THE MAELSTROM features interviews with all surviving members of the band and is crammed full of Radio Birdman music and rare archival footage and photos, some not seen for over 40 years! The fright-filled weekend will also include the Australian Premiere of Colin Minihan’s zombie apocalypse game-changer IT STAINS THE SAND RED, the Australian Premiere of Johannes Roberts’ experiment in underwater terror 47 METRES DOWN and the Australian Premiere of an all-new 4K restoration of David Lynch’s TWIN PEAKS: FIRE WALK WITH ME. Another 4K restoration making it’s Adelaide debut is Italian horror maestro Dario Argento’s 1977 masterpiece SUSPIRIA, along with THE EVIL WITHIN, made by millionaire meth addict, Andrew Getty, heir the Getty oil fortune who reportedly sunk $6 million dollars of his own fortune into the film, only to die before he could finish it. Fresh out of Sundance is 78-52, a documentary that takes an unprecedented look at the ‘shower scene from PSYCHO’, the screen murder that profoundly changed the course of world cinema. It features interviews with film buffs and filmmakers alike—including Guillermo del Toro, Bret Easton Ellis, Elijah Wood, Eli Roth, and Peter Bogdanovich amongst many others. After making waves internationally with its recent acquisition by Lionsgate in the US, Aussie found footage creature-feature CAGE DIVE will rear its fins for an Adelaide premiere. Also having its Adelaide premiere is Damien Power’s Aussie breakout Sundance hit, KILLING GROUND. Closing the festival will be the Australian premiere of Ana Lily Amirpour’s brutal yet stunning dystopian feature, THE BAD BATCH staring Suki Waterhouse, Jason Momoa, Giovanni Ribisi, Keanu Reeves & Jim Carrey among others. For session details and ticketing, please visit the MONSTER FEST site here.

Home Entertainment

Wednesday July 19th
Go-zilllllllllllla! Godzilla returns to the big screen to wreck havoc and general awesomeness, only this time thankfully its courtesy of Toho Pictures so we’re talking roots, bloody roots! It’s a peaceful day in Japan when a strange fountain of water erupts in the bay, causing panic to spread among government officials. At first, they suspect only volcanic activity, but one young executive dares to wonder if it may be something different – something alive. His worst nightmare comes to life when a massive, gilled monster emerges from the deep and begins tearing through the city, leaving nothing but destruction in its wake. As the government scrambles to save the citizens, a rag-tag team of volunteers cuts through a web of red tape to uncover the monster’s weakness and its mysterious ties to a foreign superpower. But time is not on their side, and the greatest catastrophe to ever befall the world is about to evolve right before their very eyes.
Another titan of cinema takes to the small screen with the home entertainment release of Jordan Vogt-Roberts’s perfect popcorn blockbuster, KONG: SKULL ISLAND, never have the following three words ever been so fitting…big, dumb and fun! When a scientific expedition to an uncharted island awakens titanic forces of nature, a mission of discovery becomes an explosive war between monster and man. Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Brie Larson, John Goodman and John C. Reilly star in a thrilling and original new adventure that reveals the untold story of how Kong became King.
Anthology horror films these days are few and far between, ones entirely directed by female filmmakers are practically non-existent…until now. After premiering at Sundance Film Festival earlier this, XX has enjoyed a solid festival run locally at the likes of Stranger With My Face, For Film’s Sake and our very own MONSTER FEST TRAVELLING SIDESHOW in Sydney. An all-female helmed horror anthology featuring four dark tales written and directed by fiercely talented women: Annie Clark (St. Vincent) rocks her directorial debut with THE BIRTHDAY PARTY; Karyn Kusama (THE INVITIATION, GIRLFIGHT) exorcises HER ONLY LIVING SON; Roxanne Benjamin (SOUTHBOUND) screams DON’T FALL; and Jovanka Vuckovic (THE CAPTURED BIRD) dares to open THE BOX. Award-wining animator Sofia Carrillo (LA CASA TRISTE) wraps together four suspenseful stories of terror featuring a cast including Natalie Brown, Melanie Lynskey, Breeda Wool and Christina Kirk.
Anti-Christ Superstar, Marilyn Manson takes the lead in the grimy, gritty and cerebral, LET ME MAKE YOU A MARTYR, a dark and bloody romance wrapped in the cloak of a nasty small-town thriller that was the surprise hit of the Fantasia Film Festival in 2016. After years away, Drew (Niko Nicotera, THE PURGE: ANARCHY) returns to his hometown where he reunites with the love of his life: his adopted sister June. Together they hatch a plan to rid themselves of their abusive crime boss father, Larry (Mark Boone Junior, BATMAN), who refuses to let June go. Unfortunately Larry finds out about the scheme and hires a hit man of his own (Marilyn Manson) to resolve the problem of his wayward children.
Reading as a cross between COP CAR, BADLANDS and TRUE ROMANCE, we haven’t seen MEAN DREAMS but we’re intrigued as lovers on the lam is one of our favourite Triller/Drama sub-genres, what’s more it features Bill Paxton in one of his very last on-screen roles! A courageous local farm boy, Jonas (Wiggins) and the new girl next door, Casey (Nélisse) embark on a journey that will change their lives forever. As young love blossoms between the two fifteen year olds, Jonas also discovers that Casey’s abusive home life has reached a new level of danger, and Jonas takes the lead in their escape by stealing a bag full of drug money from Casey’s corrupt father – local cop Wayne Caraway (Paxton). With the stolen cash as their only means to a better life, Casey flees with Jonas and together, under relentless pursuit from her father, they learn the hard truth of what it will take in order to survive. In the end, Casey and Jonas are forced to make a life-altering choice from which there will be no turning back.
Grim Pickings is written weekly by Jarret Gahan.