TL;DR – An interesting look at the barrier between life and death but takes some short cuts to get there
Score – 3 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene
Generally, the time we get films about what goes bump in the night it is around Halloween and not Christmas. So, it was a nice change of pace to get a film that explores the darker side of the world and what happens after death. With this in mind, today we explore a film that looks at that bridge between the living and the dead and what happens when you start playing with that fixed barrier.
So to set the scene, Chen Chia-Hao (Roy Chiu) works as a police officer for the Houli Police Agency. However, he has always led a special life because he can see the undead. This has led to him only rising to the rank of traffic cop even though he shows exemplary skill. One day while on patrol he finds a killer but during the arrest, his partner is shot and killed. He would have been killed too but a ghost stepped in and saved him. He refuses to change his report about a ghost and is fired but on his way out he is grabbed by the mysterious Mr Chang (Chia-Chia Peng) and given an offer to continue working for the police as a member of the secretive 9th Precinct, the ghost crimes bureau.
TL;DR – A look at the effects of death and trauma, that then gets weird.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
One of the things I think people have a hard time comprehending is the lasting
impact of trauma and what it does to a person. The impacts that reaching into
the past, present, and future. Today we look at a film that explores that reality
and the effect it can have and how people can be real asses about it.
So to set the scene, Ben (Jace Pickard) and Allison (Debbie Neilson) are living
their lives, exploring the potential names for their coming baby, when there is
a crash of glass outside. Ben goes outside to see what caused it when Allison
noticed the fridge door has been left open, but no one has been in the fridge.
When they get back inside the power goes out and when they flip the fuse back
on the attack happens. Two years later, Ben has finally started a new relationship
when he is meeting the parents and drinks wine for the first time in two years and
blacks out, but where did he go when he blacked out?
TL;DR – This is a well-made
animation, with an interesting story, world and characters. Full of interesting
juxtapositions like magic and technology.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
I was thinking the other day of my joy at the old Monkey Magic stories. It had me wonder that it has been a long time
since I have seen a good travel story where a group of disparate people are
brought together through fate and then discover all their flaws and joys in the
face of shared adversity. Well as fate would have it just a couple of days
later a little surprise dropped on Netflix which was everything I didn’t know I
So to set the scene, we open in on a desert wasteland on an alien (maybe)
planet with a disintegrating moon floating in orbit. Our first clue that this
is an interesting place is the image of a giant bull trampling across the
plains in search of a toilet. We cut to a town on the frontier full of dust,
wood, and a casual disregard for life. There are humans and other creatures,
and all sorts of robots, mechs, and mechanical augmentations. In the streets
walks Sam (A Special Associate Model) (Kamali Minter) from the faraway kingdom
of Botica. She does not seem to fit the tone of the local area, making friends
in a land of gunfights and wanton murder. But she is on a mission to find a
lost prince and the one person who can help her do that Philly the Kid (Kenn
Michael). One issue is that he does not really want to help, also he is cursed
and can’t die, also he had a large bounty on him that everyone is trying to
collect. So Sam, Philly, and Casey (Kamali Minter) a maintenance droid head off
on the mission in their pink coin-operated Mustang that can transform into a
bull. Now from here, we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there will
be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – It has an interesting
premise that sucks you in, great cast, great locations, but the story was a bit
hit and miss at times.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
In a world full of stories you can use to draw inspiration from, it is
surprising that more shows don’t make use of the mythology and stories from the
Arabian Peninsula. It feels like it starts and stops with Aladdin
at times, at least in shows that make it to the west. But there are such a variety
of narratives that you could draw from to tell interesting stories. Today we
are looking at a TV series that is taking that opportunity with Jinn.
So to set the scene, we open in on Amman, Jorden as a school group gets ready
for a bus ride to Petra. You have the usual clicks appearing, you have Tarek (Abd
Alrazzaq Jarkas), Omar (Mohammad Hindieh), and Nasser (Mohammad Nizar) who are
part of the popular crowd and who are happy to torment Yassin (Sultan Alkhail)
who they think is telling on them to the teacher Ms Ola (Hana Chamoun). You
have the power couple in Mira (Salma Malhas) and Fahed (Yasser Al Hadi), the
mythology nerd Hassan (Zaid Zoubi) that just won’t shut up about Jinn. When
they get to Petra they start messing around and Tarek takes pleasure in
tormenting Yassin, but later that night after a few drinks tragedy strikes when
Tarek falls down a canyon wall. However, the question remains, did he fall, or was
he pushed, and if he was, what or who pushed him? Now from here, we will be
looking at the season as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This is a show that
entrances you and then just when you think you have everything worked out it
shifts the game completely and you are left in awe with what just happened.
Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars
I have tried to keep up with all the new sci-fi shows dropping on Netflix, but
occasionally one of them slips through the cracks, and this week we are looking
at one of those with the brilliantly odd The
OA. When a friend highly suggested that I give it a watch I thought I would
get it an episode or two to see how it was and then at some point during Part 2
I looked up to see that it was 3 am and I truly wondered if I should watch the
two last episodes then and there, so that should give you an indication as to how
good the show is.
So to set the scene, we open with a rainy day as people drive over a bridge
when someone records a woman in white running across to the edge of the bridge
and then falling off into the water below. She survives, but won’t tell anybody
her name or where she is from. Meanwhile in a small town, in a housing estate
that was never finished, Nancy (Alice Krige) and Able (Scott Wilson) are going
about their day when someone sends them a link to something online and they
watch at their long lost daughter Prairie (Brit Marling) jump off a bridge.
They race to her hospital, retelling the story of how their daughter went
missing one day seven years ago, they race into her hospital bed where the
woman in front of them goes by The OA not Prairie and does not recognise who
just walked in, that is until she touches Nancy’s face. For you see when
Prairie was taken she was blind but now she can see. Now, from this point onwards, we will be looking
at Part 1 and Part 2 as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS]
TL;DR – This opener immediately drags you into a world of multiple factions that are all untrustworthy and makes you wonder who will you back?
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
There is this surreal moment that, I assume if you lived in Vancouver or cities like that you would be used to, when you see someone drive down a street in a film and then instantly realise that you have driven there before. You know those cane fields, the factories, you know that bridge, that university hall. It has happened before with places I have visited overseas, but never here in Australia, and never with Brisbane playing Brisbane.However as a critic, this is potentially dangerous territory, do I like the show because it is good or because I have a natural drive to see the local film industry do well. However, with Netflix’s new show Tidelands, I don’t think this is the case, and as I review all of the first season I think you will see immediately if this is a show that you should dive into or not.
TL;DR – Sabrina is a show that blends the occult with whimsy in a way I have not seen in a long while. It is a show where cannibalism and finding your one true love go hand in hand, and that is either going to interest you or put you right off.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
I do not envy the task of anyone who is given the job of rebooting something that has not one but two beloved incarnations. Whether it was the original comic or the 1990s TV series, a lot of people have grown up with Sabrina being a touchstone in pop culture. So, will bringing Sabrina to a new generation create that same moment, well only time will tell, but today we take a look at how the first season came together.