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Time to round up the posse, saddle up the horses and track down them film varmints. In front of our kangaroo court this time around are Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, Buried, Red, The Girl Who Played With Fire, The Social Network and Machete. Which of these are worthy of the lynch mob? Find out in this thrilling episode.
As the Eighties corporate greed eventually bit economies worldwide on the collective arse, there seemed no better time for Olly Stone to re-examine Gordon Gecko's mantras. Released from jail a seemingly reformed character, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps divvies up its time with us alternately bemoaning the state of the financial service industry, their lack of care and their lack of regulation with Shia LaBeouf's efforts at reconciling Gordon with his long estranged daughter, Shia's fiance. While it's substantially less subtle than it seems to believe that it is at points, it's an interesting drama with a compelling central character and a David Byrne soundtrack, which is a plus point in my book.
And lo, the lions lay down with the lambs, and Ryan Reynolds did stareth in a film that could be described as 'good', not just 'good considering Ryan Reynolds is in it'. Buried sees Reynolds as a civilian contractor in Iraq kidnapped and held to ransom, buried in a coffin with nothing more than a mobile phone for digging himself our with. A great central performance from Reynolds holds attention surprisingly well for a film that doesn't venture outside of a small wooden box, with his desperate developments making for an enthralling watch.
Bruce Willis Time! in Red, as a retired C.I.A. black ops agent finds himself targeted for extermination along with his old team, so he gets the ageing band back together and takes the fight to his oppressors. With it's tongue firmly in cheek, this comic action flick delivers heavily on both action and comedy which makes it a winner in our book.
The second of the Girl... franchise hits the screens in the shape of The Girl Who Played With Fire, which is a pretty decent if familiar feeling addition to the series. If it has any problems, it the apparent need to fit in the same number of grim, almost shock value moments that it could survive well without, but it's a pretty good whodunnit that's worth a look, even if it's not quite up to the same standards as the original.
The hotly anticipated Fincher/Sorkin tie-up story of the characters behind the creating of the Internet's famous Facebook in The Social Network turns out to be worthy of all the hype. Bearing only the most passing of relations with 'facts', there's a clutch of massively interesting, flawed, driven, very human characters to observe while Sorkin's cutting barbs fly with wild abandon. Superb performances, dialogue, direction and pacing make this a genuine film of the year candidate.
We round things off with Rodriguez's Machete, perhaps the least realistic action film you'll ever see as Danny Trejo goes seeking vengeance for the murder of his wife and the hands of Steven Seagal, of all people. Not quite as over the top as the Crank franchise, but it's not far off. Not a great film, but definitely great fun.
That is all for now. We'll be back sometime soon, so until then keep your nose clean and if you can't be good, be lucky.