Friday, 20 November 2015
Saturday, 5 September 2015
Produced by Forest Whitaker, this teenage coming-of-age caper set in Inglewood, California involves the usual hood narrative trifecta of drugs, gangs, and crime while attempting to offer a playful alternative to black cultural stereotypes. Fantastical, and sometimes fun, if not quite convincing, Dope (2015) offers plenty of eye candy thanks to Rick Famuyiwa's energetic direction, Rachel Morrison's colourful widescreen lensing, and a cast including prominent models, rappers, and TV personalities. Supported by a single working mother (Kimberly Elise), high school nerd Malcolm's (Shameik Moore) American Dream is not to play basketball but to get into Harvard...More.
Perhaps this year's most important documentary, Cartel Land (2015) offers a too-close-for-comfort, ground-level look at vigilante groups who attempt to thwart murderous Mexican drug cartels on both sides of the US-Mexican border. Equally chilling and engrossing, this direct cinema Sundance winner also explores moral responsibility - or the increasingly murky guise thereof - in the absence of law and order, where the only clear issue is the seemingly unstoppable cycle of violence...More.
Viewers with qualms that Me and Earl and the Dying Girl may turn out to be merely another best-selling YA novel-to-film tearjerker will be surprised by the film’s insightful focus on a decidedly nonsexual boy-girl relationship.“If this was a touching, romantic love story,” says teenage protagonist Greg (Project X star Thomas Mann) in droll voiceover, “suddenly we'd be furiously making out with the fire of a thousand suns, but this isn’t...” Busy escaping the social hell that is high school with his best friend and “co-worker,” Earl (impressive newcomer RJ Cyler), Greg is unexpectedly forced by his mother to spend time with Rachel (Manchester-raised Olivia Cooke), a classmate diagnosed with cancer...More.