Escape From Pretoria – Movie Review

TL;DR – A exploration of tension when one wrong step can be fatal.    

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Escape From Pretoria. Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

Review

One of the things I like the most about cinema is when they let me know of stories that I have previously been unaware of. As well as this, I have seen a lot of prison break films in my time, some fictional, some real, some ‘we think this is how they did it’, and I have always found them fascinating. Well, today we get to explore both of these with Escape From Pretoria.

So to set the scene, we open in the heart of apartheid South Africa with accrual footage of the time. It is here where we are introduced to Tim Jenkin (Daniel Radcliffe) and Stephen Lee (Daniel Webber) who work setting up leaflet bombs for the African National Congress or ANC. One day after a successful campaign, they are captured by the police and sentenced to twelve and eight years in the all-white political prisoner’s prison in Pretoria. While in Pretoria jail they meet Denis Goldberg (Ian Hart) who was put on trial with Nelson Mandela and fellow prisoner Leonard Fontaine (Mark Leonard Winter). They dream of escaping, but how do you do that when you are locked behind several feet of steel?    

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Movie Review – Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs the Reverend

TL;DR – A better use of the ‘choose your own adventure’ structure but it still shows the flaws with the design     

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene (bar playing the film again)

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs the Reverend. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

A while ago, Netflix dropped this weird little experiment onto its service, an episode of Black Mirror where you got to pick the direction of the story. Bandersnatch was an interesting experiment and a lot of people had fun with it but walked away from the experience feeling more than a little hollow. Well, Netflix has taken a second crack at the formula, this time with a show that could not be more different.

So to set the scene, Kimmy (Ellie Kemper) is getting married, since the end of the series, she has found love with the equally adorkable Prince Frederick (Daniel Radcliffe). Things are looking up and up for Kimmy, right until she discovers an old book in her backpack Lucy (Stephanie D’Abruzzo) of a chose your own adventure novel (foreshadowing). However, the book was loaned out from the library after she had been taken, so it could not be hers. Were there other kidnapped women out there? Well, there is only one person to ask … the Reverend (Jon Hamm) himself.

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Movie Review – Guns Akimbo

TL;DR – There is a kernel of a good idea here, and there are parts of it where you can see how it could have made a really good film, just maybe not the one we got    

Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Guns Akimbo. Image Credit: Madman

Review

When you here that the premise of a film is that someone has bolted guns to Daniel Radcliffe’s hands and let him loose in the world. Well, that congers up a lot of images and expectations, indeed Daniel has been bouncing from one delightfully odd film to the next since his time in/as Harry Potter. At the very least, it is the kind of set up when you know before walking in that it is either going to be amazing or a dumpster fire but not in-between. Well trust me, I am just as surprised as you that I got it very wrong.   

So to set the scene, Miles (Daniel Radcliffe) is your usual loner who lives a less than great life as a code monkey for a soul-sucking corporation. But at night, he finally comes alive as he trolls, well other trolls. One night, however, things take a turn as he discovers ‘Skizm’, which is kind of like Twitch but with murder, indeed we are introduced to the program with Nix (Samara Weaving) annihilating another contestant because two people start and only one comes out alive. Well, Miles starts trolling the chat and eventually gets noticed by the admin Riktor (Ned Dennehy) who smashes down his door, knocks him out, and performs a little surgery. Miles wakes up with a splitting headache … oh and two guns bolted to his hands.

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