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September 2013 Your one resource for what’s happening at the South African Box Office. www.offthescreenmagazine.com

Hitting Back Hard hitting superheroes ChloĂŤ Grace Moretz and Aaron TaylorJohnson talk to us about reprising their roles in the sequel to the smash hit, Kick-Ass 2

Dark Side of Paradise

We talk to South African actor Brandon Auret about beating up Matt Damon in the new Neil Blomkamp sci-fi epic, Elysium


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Content s Cover Story: 14 Hitting Back

Chloë Grace Moretz talks to us about getting back in the wig and mask for the sequel, Kick-Ass 2

Features:

10 Dark Side of Paradise South African actor Brandon Auret talks to us about his role in director Neil Blomkamp’s latest offering, Elysium

18 Back for Another Kick

Kick-Ass star Aaron TaylorJohnson chats to us about putting the wetsuit back on to kick more ass in the sequel, Kick-Ass 2

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The most dangerous teen in the world, Chloë Grace Moretz, talks to us about reprising the role of Hit Girl in KickAss 2

24 Playing and Raising the Music

Hlayani Junior Mabasa and Linda Sokhulu talk to us about their roles in the new coming of age drama, Felix

Reviews: Film Released August 16th 30 Planes 31 Evil Dead 32 Welcome to the Punch 33 The East 34 Jimmy in Pienk

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10 Editor Jon Broeke jon.broeke@gmail.com

18 Released August 23rd 35 Pain and Gain 36 The Heat 37 The Reluctant Fundamentalist Released August 30th 38 Elysium 39 Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters 40 Arthur Newman

Deputy Editor

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Annette Bayne

Releasing September 6th 41 Bakgat 3 42 The English Teacher 43 Kick-Ass 2 44 We’re the Millers 45 Turbo Releasing September 13th 46 2 Guns 47 The Way, Way Back 48 Felix DVD

52 GI Joe: Retaliation Extracted Breaking the Girls Kill ‘Em All

annette.bayne@gmail.com

Photo Credits Nu Metro, Ster Kinekor, Getty Images, UPI.com, Google Images, imdb.com

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Or www.offthescreenmagazine. com

Online at

Editors Letter

www.offthescreenmagazine. com

It’s September already which means another issue of Off The Screen Magazine. This month we chatted to Chloë Grace Moretz and Aaron Taylor-Johnson from the sequel to the cult smash superhero hit, Kick-Ass 2. Brendan Auret, best known for his role in Isidingo, talks to us about his role in District 9 Neil Blomkamp’s new sci-fi epic, Elysium, and Linda Sokhulu and Hlayani Junior Mabasa talk to us about their roles in the new coing of age drama, Felix. We also have all the reviews for the movies on circuit right now. We hope you enjoy our latest issue and don’t forget to pick up the next copy, online first week of October.

Best Wishes Jon Broeke Editor

Published by www.issuu.com

Join us on Facebook www.facebook.com/ offthescreenmagazine

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Dark Side of Paradise Isidingo star Brendan Auret stars in Neil Blomkamp’s second sci-fi spectacular,

Elysium. Jon Broeke sat down with him recently to discuss the role, the action and the film’s star Matt Damon ______________________________________________________ Off The Screen Magazine

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eil Blomkamp was a pretty much unknown director who had done a couple of short films when he shot to stardom directing his first feature length film, the South African scifi epic, District 9. This month his latest film, Elysium, hits the silver screen, and it’s a worthy successor to the sci-fi. Matt Damon plays Max, a previously bad boy who is now living the quite life on an Earth that has been abandoned by the rich. They now live on a space station called Elysium. When Max is exposed to a lethal dose of radiation he has to get to the station to use one of their advanced machines to save his life, but there is a high price, especially with an Afrikaans, South African, mercenary crew composed of Kruger (Sharlto Copley), Drake (Brendan Auret) and Crowe (Josh Blacker) hot on his heels. I sat down with Auret at the Europa coffee shop in Sandton city and asked him about the back story he and Blomkamp discussed about the character. “Neil and I have a very cool understanding,” he says. He’s wearing a pair of jeans and t-shirt, having come just from gym. He’s beefing up for his next role, in Blomkamp’s Chappie, currently in

Pre-Production. “We both like military stuff and Special Forces. I grew up on it, one of my favourite movies is Rambo, I was always into

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Vietnam and the weaponry and the camouflage and the different aspects of war. I served in the National Defence Force, in ’91, so he came to me and said [the character] is ex-special forces and he’s Kruger’s trigger man. So I basically based him, from a psychological point of view, as a guy who served in the 32 battalion which was quite a hectic special forces in the old regime, in the Border war, and, not a lot of people know this, but on the battle jacket [in the film], the guy that designed it made it look almost like I’d been scratching it with a knife and it has the 32’s motto on it which is fortune in battle. I know a lot about 32 battalion, I’ve read a lot on them, and the history of them. I think it’s ridiculous, the reasons we create war, but I’m kind of fascinated with it.” This is not the first time Auret has worked with Blomkamp, he was in District 9 as well. I asked him how he got involved in this film, if Blomkamp just called him and offered it to him, which it turns out, is exactly what happened. “He offered me the role,” he tells me. “But I still had to prove my worth. The American unions won’t just let some actor come in and shoot a movie, neither will the Canadian unions, so I still had to send through an audition tape so [Neil] could prove his point that he wanted me and I was right for the role. I sent it through and got the call and six months later I was on a plane to Canada for three months.” The character is a member of a team of highly trained, lethal mercenaries, led by Copley’s Kruger, a completely unhinged Afrikaans psychopath, but even psychopathic, he’s a very well trained psychopath. I asked Auret what kind of training they did for the role.

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“Neil said that my character’s from the South of South Africa, that part of town, and that’s the accent he wanted, and that’s the accent he got.” “I’m very blessed that way,” he says. “The fact that I was in the army and served with the unit I served with, it’s always been easy for me to adapt the different weaponry to the different characters I’ve played, but, for instance in District 9, we did a two week full weapons training, Alpha/Bravo movements, house penetration, search and recovery, all that to get ourselves ready for that role. For Elysium because there was a lot more CGI and effects added later we had to pretend a lot more, the firing guns weren’t real, but the firing movements, the way we held the guns and moved around Elysium, we did about two days training with an ex-special forces, Green Beret guy, so the our fire movements were correct.” Most of the action takes place in a flying ship that Auret and Blacker’s characters fly, called the Raven. I asked him exactly what they were really in when we, the audience, saw the Raven, and was surprised by the answer. “Sometimes we were in a helicopter,”

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he says. “Any aerial shot, we were in a helicopter, with a blue screen inside the helicopter, but the inside of the ship was a huge metal box that we took with us wherever we went. Mexico, it was there, Canada as well, where ever the Raven landed we had the box, this massive metal green box that opened up, so the inside of the Raven was all real. The buttons worked, things turned on, the guns moved, there were gun racks. You don’t understand, it was such fun. Often we heard, ‘Don’t touch that. Don’t touch that. Put it down Brandon’. I couldn’t help it, I wanted to see what things did.” You can tell the fun he had inside the metal box as he speaks about it, any little boy’s dream. The film was shot in Mexico, which stood in for the desolate, overpopulated and polluted world, while Canada stood in for the utopian Elysium. “We shot on the second biggest manmade landfill,” Auret tells me about the Mexican set. “It was amazing, but disgusting at the same time, you’re literally breathing in s**t. There are 4 million people who live on this thing. They have bars and strip joints and all kinds of things. They work on this thing, and it breaks your heart. We have it here, in Soweto and Gugulethu, but when you see it on that sort of scale, it’s something else.” This is something common in Blomkamp’s films, Auret tells me. He wants things real for the actors as well as the audience. “Neil loves the realism of things,” he says. “Not only for it to look real for the viewers, but also to look and feel real for the

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actors. A lot of people have asked about the blue screening, but there wasn’t a lot of blue screening in the film. We had, maybe, two days on set with the blue screen, but the rest of it was hands on, on the ground.” One of the main scenes in the film sees Auret’s Drake kicking Damon’s Max’s ass. I asked Auret what it was like to beat up Jason Bourne. “I warned him,” he jokes with a laugh. “No, I was really glad I got into such good shape for this role, otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to keep up with him and handle the pace he brings. He’s there, all the time. The fight scene, in the Raven, we did a lot of the stunts ourselves. The majority, actually. There are a couple of things, the tumble from the Raven and a couple high falls, is stunt men, and they never get the credit they deserve. We both had great stunt double. They were always there, always ready to help us with our stunts, but at the end of the day, I did kick Matt Damon’s butt.” Something that makes this film

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really different, especially next to the other big budget American films that it’s standing next to, is the fact that the characters have accents. Damon is American, but he speaks Spanish a lot of the time, as do his friends and acquaintances on Earth, while Jodie Foster, who plays the big bad on board the station, speaks French a lot of the time. Auret, Blacker and Copley all have heavy Afrikaans accents and even speak in Afrikaans in the film. I asked Auret what kind of discussions he had with Blomkamp about the accents. “Neil said that my character’s from the South of South Africa, that part of town, and that’s the accent he wanted, and that’s the accent he got,” he says simply that Blomkamp never thought twice about the Afrikaans. “The whole thing about Elysium is that when it happens, and it’s happening at the moment, that the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer, is that it’s a global problem, not a continent problem, or a country problem, but a global one. I think with him bringing in the Mexicans and the Brazilians and the French and the South Africans it makes it a global issue.” And a global film. If you want to see Auret beating on Jason Bourne, and enjoy the action adventure and touching story that is Elysium, go to the Box Office today and check it out.

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n 2010 Chloë Grace Moretz was already making a name for herself. At the age of 13 she had already been in 9 features and a slew of TV shows, but it wasn’t until she appeared in a small independent superhero movie as a foul mouthed 11 year old murdering superhero that she hit the limelight. As Hit Girl in the smash cult hit Kick-Ass, Moretz made a name for herself, leading to roles in Johnny Depps’ Dark Shadows, the vampire drama Let Me In, Martin Scorsese’s love letter to cinema Hugo, and in her winning the role in the much anticipated re-make, Carrie, as the titular character. Now she’s back on the silver screen as her purple wearing, blade wielding hero in the sequel to the original, Kick-Ass 2. We sat down with her and chatted to her about putting the wig and mask back on three years later to reprise her role. “It was so fun,” she says. “Being able to be Hit Girl again was really a surreal experience, because you leave a character behind, especially when you’re eleven years old, and four years later you’re putting on the costume again, you’re working with the same actors again, you’re wearing the same wig, you have the same hair and makeup team, it’s crazy, and totally surreal to be able to do it again, but so much fun.” The character is the same, but there are a lot of differences, it has been five years. “Mindy Macready is a young girl,” she tells us. “Who, when you meet her in the first movie, when she’s eleven years old, and she has her dad, played by Nicolas Cage, she’s been raised as a vigilante her entire life and really knows no different. Killing is like a comic book, it’s a game for her, and she loses her dad in the first film, and now, coming into the second film, meeting her five years later when she’s sixteen years old and she’s basically

figuring her life out. She got adopted by her dad’s best friend, who’s a cop.” Since she’s older now she sees the world a little differently, and she’s beginning to realise that killing isn’t all fun and games. “She realises that she is a vigilante,” Moretz says. “And she just wants to bring justice into the world, so she just can’t sit by and watch bad people walk through her life. So she basically gives justice to the world and rights the wrongs, but she also realises that she’s not a killer. She doesn’t do it for fun. She does it because she really does want the world to be a better place.”

“Being able to be Hit Girl again was really a surreal experience, because you leave a character behind, especially when you’re eleven years old, and four years later you’re putting on the costume again.” Off The Screen Magazine

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Also reprising their roles in the sequel are Aaron Taylor-Johnson, back again as KickAss, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse, back as Chris D’Amico, but changing his super villain non-de-plume by becoming The Motherf****r. Chloe was thrilled to be back working with the same actors from the original series. “The gangs all back together again,” she laughs. “I love Aaron and I love Chris, and they’ve both changed so much. They’ve both become such men. I worked with them, I feel like, when they were babies and I was a baby, and now we’ve grown up so much, it’s like we’re a little group of adults now, it’s so funny. Since Kick-Ass Mintz-Plasse has given his voice to animated characters in How to Train Your Dragon and appeared in the remake of the classic vampire film, Fright Night. Taylor-Johnson has appeared in the theatrical Anna Karenina and is set to play another superhero, Quicksilver, in the Avengers sequel due for a 2015 release date.

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They are much more established actors now, as is Moretz herself, and it shows in a bigger, more exciting film. “It’s just broader,” she says about Kick-Ass 2. “It’s bigger, it’s main steam. It allows you that if you didn’t see the first one you can see this one and still know what’s going on because we catch you up. There are more explosions and just more stuff going on.” Including a massive fight between Moretz’s Hit Girl and the enforcer on The Motherf****r’s side, Mother Russia, played by Olga Kurkulina. “The battle between Mother Russia and I is very, very intense,” she says. “It took us like two weeks to film and it was insane.” The entire film looks a little insane, but that’s the appeal of Kick-Ass. Without the insanity there would be no film. See Moretz strutting her stuff now at the Box Office, in her wig and mask and cutting down bad guys wholesale.

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Back for Another Kick

Back for another round Aaron Taylor-Johnson is putting on the green wetsuit again as Kick-Ass 2 comes to the big screen. We chatted to him about Dave’s journey, the stunts and a new director. Off The Screen Magazine 14


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hen Aaron Taylor-Johnson put on the green wetsuit on the first day of shooting for Kick-Ass I’m sure he had no idea that the film would become such a hit, with a fierce cult following, but that’s exactly what happened, and the green suited hero, who has no exceptional powers or training, besides being able to take a beating, became a huge hero for millions of fans out there. Now the hero is back with the sequel to the 2010 hit, Kick-Ass 2, and Taylor-Johnson is back in the wetsuit to get his ass kicked again, and maybe kick a little ass himself this time. We chatted to him and asked what it was like, after three years that saw him featuring in several big films, including Anna Karenina, with Kiera Knightley, putting the suit back on. “It was tight,” he jokes. “No, it was good fun. It was challenging because it was new for me to go back to the same character. I usually go from one thing to the next and very differently, so it was a bit of a puzzle to do. I’m trying to think of the right words for you.” Taylor-Johnson is back as Dave Lizewski, an average guy who puts on a green suit every night and goes out trying to fight crime. He teams up with Chloë Grace Moretz’s Hit Girl against the evil forces that have been amassed by Christopher Mintz-Plasse’s The Motherf****r, formally Red Mist. We asked him what it was like to be back with the original cast.

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“Amazing,” he says enthusiastically. “I love hanging around with them, they’re like family.” Many new faces join the cast this time around, including big names like Jim Carrey and John Leguizamo. We asked TaylorJohnson what they were like on the set. “You’re surrounded by people who are just happy to be there,” he says about the entire cast and crew. “That’s the thing about doing the sequel too; that the people who loved the first one have all stepped forward to be part of this one, like Jim Carrey, and John Leguizamo and Donald Faison. You’re just like, ‘Oh, great’, you know.” Dave is changing in this film. Just having graduated from high school, he’s trying to figure out where he fits in in the world, and whether or not Kick Ass fits in there too. “Chris and Chloe have a very dynamic, very different journey from the first [film],” he tells us. “Which I think are fantastic and brilliant, and I loved that, but Dave is still trying to discover himself. So it’s trying to make that person the person that we left off knowing and grow him into a man.” Part of him becoming a man is dealing with the consequences of his actions, and the consequences of putting on a pair of tights to battle bad guys. “He’s needs to take on some responsibilities for his actions,” TaylorJohnson tells us. “Actually the consequences

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“With the first one we bought something really new to the cinema,” he says. “Something really original and fresh and quite shocking in moments, and I think we’ve taken that potential and pushed it another notch higher.” weigh heavily on his shoulders this time, and he understands that.” Following on from the first film is not going to be an easy task, especially considering the huge fan following the heroes have, but Taylor-Johnson thinks that they’ve achieved it.

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“With the first one we bought something really new to the cinema,” he says. “Something really original and fresh and quite shocking in moments, and I think we’ve taken that potential and pushed it another notch higher.” The man saddled with doing just that is director Jeff Wadlow, who also wrote the script, taking over directing duties from Matthew Vaughn who directed the original. Taylor-Johnson thinks he is completely up for the task. “I remember the first day that we sat down together and first met each other,” he says. “And I got on with him really well and we just chatted about the character. He was just really sincere and passionate about it and really keen on making Dave’s journey something. It wasn’t just about how much action we could put in it and what not. All behind the stunts and the fighting there needs to be a motive and a function, which I loved too.” And there wouldn’t be any action without motive. If you want to see Dave’s journey, and see the action and violence, then catch Kick-Ass 2 on the big screen right now.

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Playing and Raising the Music In the new dramatic musical film Felix, Hlayani Junior Mabasa plays the title character, while Linda Sokhulu plays his mother. Jon Broeke sat down with them, right before the premiere, to chat about the film, the music and what’s behind them both

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elix, a new drama opening this month at the box office, is about a little boy and his mother. The little boy wants to play the saxophone, but his mother, afraid he will become like his father, an alcoholic jazz musician, is completely against it. I caught up with Hlayani Junior Mabasa, who plays Felix, and Linda Sokhulu, who plays Lindiwe, his mother, just before the premiere of the film at Nu Metro at Montecasino. “Felix is a curious kid,” Mabasa tells me about his character. He’s sitting in shorts, a t-shirt and a peak cap, looking everything like the teenager he is. “I could say he wants to play the sax because his father played the sax, he wants to know everything, and he’s very nosy. He’s a very curious kid.” Felix’s story starts when he gets a scholarship to attend a prestigious private high school, something Mabasa can relate too, not the scholarship, or the private school, but something every teenager has to deal with… Moving to high school. “It’s actually not that different from me, that’s what we share in common,” he refers to the first days in Felix’s school career, which are anything but pleasant. “My high school days were hell, they were just hell. I remember the first day of school was just one of the worst days of my life, because I just got there and was an outcast. No one wanted to be friends with me, no one wanted to sit with me, or anything it was terrible.” Sokhulu is sitting in the dress that she’s wearing for the premiere. A white one cut quite high to show leg, and she looks stunning. She tells me about her character, the mother trying to protect her child. “It’s because Lindiwe knows what the jazz world looks

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like,” she tells me about her character trying to keep Felix out of the jazz world. “Her husband died as a result of overindulging in the jazz world, he drank too much, he would come home at the most ridiculous hours, and here she is, trying to bring up these kids, and loving them to bits, obviously, but as a result of his world he ended up dying of liver failure and such, so the idea of Felix, whose world has just opened up going to this private school, for him to now want to go and play jazz, the very thing that took her husband away, in her opinion, is something very difficult for her to accept. He is the apple of her eye, and the idea of him going down the same road as his father is not something she can deal with.” Sokhulu is better known for her television work in Generations. I asked her how she got involved in the project. “I got involved through auditions,” she laughs. “I got a call from my agent telling me Roberta [Durant, the director] was interested in seeing me for the part, so it was me against other actresses, but I fell in love with the script during the audition, with the audition pieces that I read, and I was lucky enough to get the part.” Mabasa had a little more competition to the get the role of Felix. About 400 boys. “I had 5 auditions all in all,” he says. “It was like hectic for me. I had to ditch days at school, well not ditch, but miss days at school for the auditions, and it was like hell

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“I think it must be a very daunting thing for parents to watch their child, who they have everything as far as they can to educate you and get you into a good direction, to now have this child turn around and say, ‘I want to be actor’, something that is just such a feast or famine reality.” for me because I had exams and all these other things happening at the same time, so I had to manage all that to get the role.” One of the key attributes for Felix is his ability to play musical instruments. He starts on the penny whistle, which he plays very well, but then during the film he learns the saxophone as well, but this isn’t something Mabasa was even aware of when he went for the first auditions. “I didn’t know anything about it,” he tells me when I ask what was said about the musical aspect at the auditions. “I remember being told I was going to have to play the saxophone only after I got the part, which was very overwhelming for me. I was stoked though. I was very happy.” He started training straight away and plays the saxophone himself, and very well I might add, in the film. “I remember getting the saxophone,” he tells me. “The very first time, and opening it with my saxophone teacher and I was surprised at the fact it I’d be playing it. It’s a beautiful instrument, it’s very cool.”

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He loves jazz music, especially soul jazz, which aided him in learning and playing the music he had to for the role. Sokhulu hates jazz music, in the role, but in real life she love it as well. “I was thrilled to get my tickets for the Joy of Jazz festival last week in Jo’burg,” she says with a laugh. “I thoroughly enjoy jazz, but for me it was something of an acquired taste. I didn’t grow up loving jazz, but in time I grew up to love it a lot.” The film is very emotionally driven with a lot of the most dramatic scenes happening between mother and son. I asked both actors how they got themselves into a mind set to portray those scenes. “I have to honestly say that the script is so beautifully crafted that it leads you,” Sokhulu answers. “You just honour it as you’re going on. Hlayani is such a natural actor, he just laps it up as it’s coming at him and I feel like the script just speaks for itself, so you just can’t help but try to live up to what those words are saying. If that makes sense.” “It’s like [Linda] said,” Mabasa adds. “It just about loving the script. I was committed to the Felix character. I had to change the way I speak, everything, so it comes to the extent when it’s not crying for yourself anymore, it’s putting yourself in their shoes and thinking, ‘What would I do if I was him?’.” Felix stands against his mother to play the music, doing what his heart tells him, rather than what she tells him. This is something that every actor can identify with, since there is always someone telling them that acting is bad idea. I asked the actors what their parents thought when they told them that they wanted to be actors. “Completely identified with that,” Sokhulu agrees. “Bless my parents, I think it must be a very daunting thing for parents to watch their child, who they have everything as far as they can to educate you and get you into a good direction, to now have this child turn around and say, ‘I want to be actor’, something that is just such a feast or famine reality, and the feast only lasts as long as you’re working, and the famine always seem to last just a little longer. I think I can Off The Screen Magazine

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definitely understand their reservations, but my mother and my father have been so beautiful as the years have gone on. They have embraced this journey that I’ve been on and I was so blessed to be able to see this movie with them down in Durban at the Durban International Film Festival, so they were among the first people to see the film.” While Mabasa is very young he also understands. “My dad supported me the whole time,” he tells me. “I’ve been at this a while, this is my fourth movie, though this is my first

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lead, but my dad has always supported me. He’s the one that pushed me into the industry and I love it. I thank my dad with all my heart. He’s the best person in the world. He’s my Mandela. I look up to him so much. He’s the person that helps me through anything. He’s just amazing.” Felix is playing at cinemas nationwide right now, so go and see Mabasa and Sokhulu playing son and mother in the heart wrenching, but also heart-warming film.

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Film Review: Released August 16th Planes 9/10

Starring the voices of Dane Cook, Stacy Keach and Teri Hatcher Directed by Klay Hall

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rom above the world of Car’s comes Disney’s Planes. Dusty (voiced by Dane Cook) is a crop duster that dreams of bigger things. He wants to join in the around the world race with some of the fastest planes in the world, however, he has a few problems, firstly he’s a crop duster and would be first to enter the race, and secondly, he has a little fear of heights. He doesn’t let that stop him though as, in a twist of fate, Dusty manages to get into the race and, with a little help from his friends Skipper (voiced by Stacy Keach), Chug (voiced by Brad Garrett) and Dottie (voiced by Teri Hatcher), he heads off to

compete, but as he begins to do well, and far better than anyone had planned, the previous winner, Ripslinger (voiced by Roger Craig Smith), begins to worry about the little crop duster actually beating him, and begins to plan his downfall. Another in the long line of hit Disney animated films, Planes is set to be another huge hit at the Box Office, and with good reason. It’s sweet and funny and inspirational and everything you would want from a Disney film for you and your kids. The characters are well drawn and fleshed out, with really funny moments and characters and other interesting ones. This film is soon to be among the list of kid’s favourites, so take them to see it on the big screen in awesome 3D, and then buy it on DVD as soon as it’s available.

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Film Review: Released August 16th Evil Dead (Not Rated) Starring Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez and Lou Taylor Pucci Directed by Fede Alvarez

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n the much anticipated remake of the 1981 cult-hit horror film, five twenty-something friends become holed up in a remote

cabin. When they discover a Book of the Dead, they unwittingly summon up dormant demons living in the nearby woods, which possess the youngsters in succession until only one is left intact to fight for survival. Unfortunately we didn’t catch this one, but we’ve heard that it is seriously scary. Have a look and drop us a line to let us know what you thought.

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Film Review: Released August 16th Welcome to the Punch 7/10 Starring James McAvoy, Mark Strong and Andrea Riseborough Directed by Eran Creevy

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etective Max Lewinsky (James McAvoy) is a rookie cop chasing down an accomplished bank robber, Jacob Sternwood (Mark Strong). He corners the criminal, only to get himself shot in the process and let him escape. A year later Lewinsky is now a bitter shell of his former self and Sternwood is hiding in Iceland, but when his son is involved in a heist that goes very wrong, he is pulled out of hiding, coming back to London. This gives Lewinsky the

chance he’s been waiting for to catch the man that eluded him before, but before they know it they are both drawn into a conspiracy that reaches from the lowest gutters to the highest powers in the very police force Lewinsky fights for, and they need to combine their forces, if somewhat reluctantly, to survive. This is the British answer to the buddy cop film. McAvoy is intense and broody as the once promising cop turned into a bitter cynic after failing miserably. Strong is frightening as a master thief who is trying to save his son. It’s an interesting storyline, though it takes a while to get going, but once it does the action comes thick and fast and it’s a thrill ride. I especially liked the opening car chase through London, very intense.

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Film Review: Released August 16th

The East 7/10

Starring Brit Marling, Alexander Skarsgård and Ellen Page Directed by Zal Batmanglij

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arah (Brit Marling) is a former FBI agent now working in private security, kind of a spy for hire. She is put on the case of a group of environmentalists calling themselves, The East, and poses as a homeless runaway to

get access to the group, lying to her husband (Jason Ritter) along the way. After a while on the street she’s taken in by the group and gets involved in their activities, but as she stays with them she begins to understand what they’re doing and why they’re doing it, as well as developing feelings for the leader of the group, Benji (Alexander Skarsgård). Soon she finds herself having to choose between the life she knew and the one she’s started with these people. This is a very interesting film. The bad guys, as the East is shown to be at the beginning of the film, are more like revolutionary fighters than terrorists. Their methods may not be moral, per se, but they have legitimate reasons for their grievances, as the Marling character understands. It’s easy to identify and sympathise with them, but what they’re doing is still wrong, hence the moral dilemma Marling’s character faces, and you feel it as the audience as well. The question of, which side would you be on? I will say that the group bathing sessions would put me off joining the group, and also put me off the film just a little in those sessions. That and the spin the bottle game, which is kind of weird.

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Film Review: Released August 16th

Jimmy in Pienk 7/10

Starring Louw Venter, Gys De Villiers and Terence Bridget Directed by Hanneke Schutte

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hen Jimmy’s (Louw Venter) dad, Buks (Gys De Villiers) dies and he finds out that they are about to lose the family farm he heads off to the big city, Johannesburg, to find his uncle, Frederique (Also Gys De Villiers), the rich owner of a chain of hair salons to ask for a loan to save the farm. Frederique though is bitter towards the family that turned its back on him because he was different, so he devises a way to get back at them, by forcing Jimmy to compete in a reality show, a reality that is to find a new hair dresser for his flagship salon, but, of course, Jimmy knows nothing about hair dressing, and is shocked when he learns he has to pretend to be gay as well, but he agrees to do it to save the farm, and soon begins to win the hearts of the voters by just being his naïve and honest self, much to the horror of his uncle. I enjoyed this film. I found it was funny at times and the story was sweet and bubbly, but what concerns me is the fact that I can’t see it finding an audience. The entire film is Afrikaans, and the Afrikaans market is notoriously conservative. They don’t like to talk about homosexuality or anything like that, so an entire film about a Boer Boijtie pretending to be gay may be a little too much to deal with. Of course, I may be completely wrong, and I hope I am, because people should see it just to see the great duel performance by De Villiers, but again, he pretends to be gay, and is the Afrikaans public at large ready for that?

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Film Review: Released August 23rd

Pain and Gain 8/10

Starring Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson and Anthony Mackie Directed by Michael Bay

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aniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) is a personal fitness trainer who wants more from life. He’s convinced that if he wants it badly enough all he has to do is take it, after all it’s the American dream, isn’t it? So he teams up with Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson) a recently paroled man who found Jesus in prison, but still has issues with drugs and ding bad things, and Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie), Daniel’s friend from the gym and a rampant steroid user, and the three decide to kidnap Victor Kershaw (Tony Shalhoub), a miserly client of Daniel’s. They’re then going to torture him into signing over all his property and money over to the three of them. After an insane kidnapping, where everything that can go wrong, kind of does, the three get exactly what they want, Kershaw’s house, his cars and his money, but

after a spending spree that mainly includes a house and huge amount of dope, the money is gone, so the three figure out another kidnapping, but things go horribly wrong and they need to try and figure out a way to cover their tracks, especially with a private eye, Ed DuBois (Ed Harris)m hired by Kershaw, hot on their heels. This is the strangest, dumbest story that I’ve seen in a while, and when you realise that it is in fact a true story you scratch your head and wonder how people so stupid could survive to adulthood, let alone have productive lives, which they do, sort of. It’s action filled and fun, in true Michael Bay style, it looks like another Bad Boy film. It doesn’t have the car’s falling or the huge explosions, but it is crazy fun and the characters bring it to life. Wahlberg, Mackie and Johnson are all fabulous as the trio of body builders who decide to pull off this daring campaign, without a brain cell between the three of them too share, and Johnson especially is hilarious when he’s on his drug fuelled binges and acting crazy. Shalhoub gives a stellar performance as the victim who becomes the hunter. He’s bitter and twisted and really horrible, you don’t even feel so bad when he does lose everything. He’s simply fantastic. The rest of the supporting cast are great, including Harris’ semi-retired PI, Ken Jeong’s Johnny Wu, the motivational speaker who inspires Daniel, Rob Corddry’s John Mese, Daniel’s boss who gets dragged into the scam without his knowledge and Bar Paly’s Sorina Luminita, the gorgeous stripper who Daniel brings in to the caper by telling her that they’re CIA. The entire film is funny and quirky and crazy. If you’re a fan of Wahlberg or Johnson you should see it.

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Film Review: Released August 23rd

The Heat 6/10

Starring Sandra Bullock, Melissa McCarthy and Michael McDonald Directed by Paul Feig

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arah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) is a straight laced, by-the-book FBI agent who has her eye on a promotion that has just opened up, but her boss isn’t sure she’s the right fit, especially since none of the other agents like the pedantic agent, so he assigns her a case, go to Boston and track down the elusive drug lord, Larkin, but the problem is no one knows who Larkin is, or even what he looks like. Ashburn takes the case, hoping to get the promotion from it, and heads to Boston, but the moment she arrives

she gets in the way of the narcotics cop who is running the streets there, Mullins (Melissa McCarthy), an un-orthodox, foul mouthed detective, who hates Ashburn at sight. The two are teamed up to find the drug lord, but they might not survive each other, let alone the mysterious figure who is now trying have them killed. I’m a fan of McCarthy and Bullock. I loved McCarthy back in her Mike and Molly days all the way to her Bridesmaids and Identity Thief stints and have loved her as a sweetheart or a foul mouthed biker chick. Bullock has proven herself as one of the better actors in Hollywood, from Practical Magic to Miss Congeniality and back to Speed, she is, was and always will be fantastic, but this film is not their best work, even if they are together. The truth is that, though it’s funny at first, after the first twenty minutes it’s just the same thing over and over again, and it gets a bit much. There’s only so much swearing and silliness that one can stand. The problem is that neither of the characters have much growth. The way they are at the beginning of the film is how they are at the end. They try to grow, but just end up going backwards. It’s like Miss Congeniality, but without the congeniality. A bit of a miss, I’m afraid.

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Film Review: Released August 23rd

The Reluctant Fundamentalist (Not Rated)

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rom Award-winning director Mira Nair, and based on the acclaimed novel by Mohsin Hamid, comes the explosive new film, The Reluctant Fundamentalist. In 2010, as student demonstrations rage in Lahore, a young Pakistani professor Changez Khan (Riz Ahmed) is interviewed by American journalist Bobby Lincoln (Liev Schreiber). Princeton-educated Changez tells Lincoln of his past as a brilliant business analyst on Wall Street. He talks of the glittering future that lay before him, his mentor, Jim Cross (Kiefer Sutherland), and the beautiful and sophisticated Erica (Kate Hudson), with whom he was set to share that future. In the aftermath of 9/11, the alienation and suspicion he is suddenly met with leads him back to his homeland, and the family to whom

Starring Riz Ahmed, Kate Hudson and Liev Schreiber Directed by Mira Nair he is very close. Charisma and intelligence catapult him to become a leader both in the eyes of the Pakistani students that adore him, and the American government that suspects him. The collegial pretense of the meeting in a Lahore tea house, between Lincoln and Changez, slowly gives way to why the unlikely pair is meeting on a summer day—a foreign professor has been kidnapped by extremists, and the clock is ticking toward the deadline for his execution. Changez's family is being harassed and is in real danger. Bobby listens carefully, but with an agenda of his own. Leading us through the culturally rich and beguiling worlds of New York, Lahore and Istanbul, The Reluctant Fundamentalist is an exploration of bias and the phenomenon of globalization that is both brilliant and unsettling. Unfortunately we missed this one. Get to the cinema now and see it and tell us what you thought.

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Film Review: Released August 30th Elysium 9/10 Starring Matt Damon, Sharlto Copley and Jodie Foster Directed by Neil Blomkamp

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n the future the divide between haves and have-nots has been increased dramatically, especially after the world ended up on the brink of annihilation from over-population and pollution. The haves moved to an off world space station called Elysium, a place where their pampered way of life could be preserved, while the rest of us were left on Earth to battle just to survive, praying every day for a way to Elysium. On this Earth is Max (Matt Damon), an orphan raised by nuns, who dreams of a better life on Elysium. He had some runs in’s with the law, robots built by rich people, but now works in a factory making those very robots. His life takes a turn for the worse when he’s exposed to a lethal dose of radiation and given a few days to live. He knows there are machines on Elysium that could save his life so he goes to a smuggler, Spider (Wagner Moura) to get passage to the station. Spider agrees, but only if he helps to

steal valuable information from a rich citizen of Elysium. With nothing to lose Max agrees, but, unbeknownst to them, the person they choose has just been enlisted by the Secretary of Defence of Elysium (Jodie Foster) to aid in her taking over the space station, so when they hijack him they interfere with her plans. Now they have everyone after them, the police, the army and three very mean South African mercenaries, led by Kruger (Sharlto Copley), an insane man who is far more dangerous than anyone even realises. This is the second film to come from Blomkamp, director of District 9, and it has been highly anticipated, and I have to say, he does not disappoint. The film is smart and fast and highly entertaining. The effects are really impressive, but don’t distract from the story, which is the main hero of the film. The Elysium station is amazing and looks everything you’d expect something like that to look. Foster and Damon give wonderful performances again, as you would expect from actors of their calibre, but the star of the film is Copley. His Kruger is as frightening and completely insane as another famous Kruger, namely Freddy. He is mental and menacing and completely wonderful, really a stellar performance from one of the best actors to ever come out of South Africa. This is a film I would happily recommend this film to anyone who asked. It is really good fun.

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Film Review: Released August 30th Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters 9/10 Starring Logan Lerman, Alexandra Daddario and Brandon T. Jackson Directed by Thor Freudenthal

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ercy and the Demi-gods are back. It’s been a year since Percy (Logan Lerman), Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario) and Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) found the lightening thief and saved Olympus, but nothing interesting has happened since. Percy hasn’t really excelled at anything, and he’s beginning to fear that he’s a one quest wonder, until circumstances arise to give him a second chance. Luke (Jake Abel), Hermes’ son and the lightening thief, is back and he’s managed to destroy the barrier that protects Camp Half-Blood, where all the demi-gods hide. The barrier was created by Zeus when his daughter Thalia was killed. He turned her into a tree so she could live forever, and used the tree to create the barrier, but now the tree is dying. To save it Percy, Annabeth, Grover and Tyson (Douglas Smith), Percy’s half-brother who happens to be a Cyclops, go in search of the Golden Fleece to save the tree. Problem is not only does the quest

belong to someone else, Clarisse (Leven Rambin), the daughter of Ares, god of war, Luke is after the Fleece as well, and he wants it to release a monster that may destroy the entire world. I thoroughly enjoyed the first Percy Jackson film. I thought the characters worked well together and the story was clever and well researched, able to stand against Harry Potter and the Twilight series easily. Now the second film in the series is even better than the first. The plotline is tighter and the characters are even better developed this time, with the addition of the new characters, Clarisse and Tyson, helping to develop the already established characters. The effects are better this time around, looking even more realistic and engaging, especially the monsters in the sea and the Cyclops. The acting is great from everyone in the cast and the addition of Anthony Head as Chiron is great. This is a great addition to the Percy Jackson franchise and I look forward to the next film, which is pointed towards at the end of this one. I also suggest everyone go and buy the books to get even more out of the series.

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Film Review: Released August 30th Arthur Newman 4/10 Starring Colin Firth, Emily Blunt and Anne Heche Directed by Dante Ariola

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allace Avery Colin Firth) is an insignificant little man. He hates his job, his ex-wife and his son, Kevin (Lucas Hedges) hate him and he wants a change. His answer to this is to fake his own death and assume a new identity, that of Arthur Newman, before buying a sports car and travelling across the country to take up a job as a golf pro, but on the road he runs into Mike (Emily Blunt) a woman who is more than a little unstable, but also in the same boat Wallace is in. She is also far more adept then he is at pretending to be something she’s not. He agrees to drive her and the two set off on the strangest road trip ever, as they assume other peoples identities, even breaking into their houses to pretend to be them for a while, before moving on, each step bringing him closer to the job he’s dreamed of and the tragedy that awaits.

This is one of the strangest, most pointless films I’ve seen. There doesn’t seem to be any kind of moral that I could see in the film, unless you look at the, ‘Be grateful for what you’ve got’, moral, but even that is heavy handed and doesn’t really fit. Neither of the characters, Wallace or Mike, seem to have any kind of growth. They start in weird semi-realities where they can break into people’s houses with no consequences, and seem to end in the same place, with no growth at all. The scenes between Wallace’s son and his girlfriend (Anne Heche), who thinks he’s dead, come over as a little creepy, instead of the sweet compassionate, two people clinging to each other, scene s that they were meant to be. It’s all a little too strange for my tastes.

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Film Review: Releasing September 6th Bakgat 3 (Not Rated) Starring Ivan Botha, Cherie van der MerweCoetzee and Altus Theart Directed by Stefan Nieuwoudt

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ur favourite rugby hero, Wimpie Koekemoer, and his crazy friends are back on screen for the third instalment of the Bakgat!-trilogy. The newly engaged Wimpie and Katrien move to England with stars in their eyes after a British club gives Wimpie a contract to play rugby, but fame and riches hardly falls in one's lap. Their apartment is hardly a mansion and Wimpie's teammates give him a hard time from day one. Wimpie's former enemy, Werner "Killer"

Botha, plays on the same team. They soon assemble a proudly South African rugby team aimed to win the league's prize money. Their players, however, are an unlikely bunch of lunatics and even Wimpie's former high school friend, Japie, and his friends from rehab, Borrie and Barry, join their team. Wimpie and his team actually start making some progress in the league while Katrien is planning the wedding of the year. Will they make it to the final and do they actually have a chance at winning the prize money? Wimpie has to make a tough decision and he doesn't want to let his teammates down, but he also doesn't want to ruin his future with Katrien. Unfortunately we missed this one. Go to the cinema now and check it out.

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Film Review: Releasing September 6th

Turbo (Not Rated) Starring the voices of Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson and Paul Giamatti Directed by David Soren

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urbo is a little guy with big dreams. Not satisfied with living life at a snail’s pace, he has a powerful and resolute need for speed. Turbo trains tirelessly, measuring his progress with a yard stick. (His new record: covering the 36-inch-long “track”…in 17 minutes.) Turbo’s single-minded goal is to compete in the greatest race in the world: the Indy 500. When we meet Turbo, he’s somewhat of an outcast in the snail community, which is less about big dreams and more about punching a time clock at their place of employment (and principal source of nourishment) – the [tomato] “plant.” Turbo’s brother Chet, whose credo is, safety first, last and only, shares the community’s insistence on a snail-paced routine. Chet loves his brother, but he is concerned that Turbo’s obsession with all things fast could lead to disaster – or worse! Leaving the plant behind, Turbo begins his journey to fulfill his dreams when he is swept from a freeway overpass onto the hood of a sports car, and is then propelled into the muscle car’s air intake valve. Explosive nitrous oxide charges every

atom of Turbo’s body, altering his molecular structure. The freak accident infuses Turbo with incredible speed – he can reach 200 miles per hour – and he now blazes across the streets of Los Angeles like a neon bullet. But even a turbo-charged Turbo can’t accomplish miracles on his own. Luckily, fate intervenes again, when Turbo and Chet are captured by a Tito, the co-proprietor (with his brother Angelo) of a Van Nuys, California-based taco truck. Tito’s sideline – and his true passion – is pitting snails against one another in not-sofast-and-furious racing competitions. At the race’s home base, the Starlight Plaza, Turbo meets the “Racing Snails,” a ragtag group with shells that look like mini-street racing cars. Their pimped-out exteriors are complemented by their trash-talking personalities. The Racing Snails make fast friends with Turbo, and together they begin a journey of adventure, bonding and family. Unfortunately we missed this one, but we just know the kids will absolutely adore it. Take them to see it today.

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Film Review: Releasing September 6th

The English Teacher 7/10 Starring Julianne Moore, Michael Angarano and Greg Kinnear Directed by Craig Zisk

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inda Sinclair (Julianne Moore) has always lived her life in books, which explains why she’s an English teacher and has no man in her life, but after she runs into Jason Sherwood (Michael Angarano) an ex-student all that changes. He has returned home after not making it as a playwright in New York, but

Linda convinces him to let her read his script, and after she has she convinces him to let them put it on at the school. The problem is that the script is not exactly appropriate for a high school, but she and the drama teacher, Carl Kapinas (Nathan Lane) convince the principal that they can put it on. Things get really complicated when Linda and Jason sleep together. It’s a one off thing and they’re not going to do it again, but when he starts becoming interested in the lead of his play, Halle (Lily Collins), Linda gets jealous and gets involved, this leads to the affair coming out in public and Linda’s credibility going out the window. Can she get her life back after this disaster? I enjoyed this film, but felt like it wasn’t everything it could be. It kind of balances on the wall between comedy and drama, never falling over onto one side or the other. The problem with this is that it doesn’t have a true identity, flitting between the comedy of the scenario and the drama, but not really engaging in either. It’s a real pity because this film would have worked either way. As a drama it could have been an exploration into a mistake that could possibly destroy a life, whereas as a comedy it would have been really funny. Unfortunately by balancing between it’s never either. A pity, but still, with some funny and emotional moments, it’s not a bad watch.

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Film Review: Releasing September 6th Kick-Ass 2 9/10 Starring Aaron TaylorJohnson, Chloe Grace Moretz and Christopher Mintz-Plasse Directed by Jeff Wadlow

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t’s been a while since the events in KickAss. Mindy (Chloe Grace Moretz) is still battling bad guys as Hit girl, but she’s feeling the loss of her father a lot. Dave (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) has hung up the mask, but wants to get back into it, so he asks Mindy to train him. She agrees, wanting a [artner, but no sooner have they started then her adoptive father, Marcus (Morris Chestnut), her father’s former partner, finds out she’s still Hit Girl and asks her to promise him she’ll never go out fighting again. She agrees, leaving Dave in the lurch, so he goes out and finds a group of heroes who are trying to help people, led by a former mobster, Captain Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey). They go about trying to make the city safer while Mindy tries to be an ordinary girl, but both of their plans are disrupted when Chris D’Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), formally Red Mist, appears as The Motherf****r and starts killing people to get to Kick Ass. This leads to Hit Girl having to come out of retirement and a massive showdown between the forces of

good, behind Kick Ass, and the forces of evil, paid for by The Motherf*****r. I am a huge fan of the original Kick Ass movie. It’s one of my favourite films of all time, so when I learned that there was going to be a sequel I was thrilled, but could they keep that indescribable thing that made the first film such a cult classic. The simple answer is… Yes. This film is even better than the first film. The characters are more developed. Mindy trying to be a girl, instead of an assassin. The scene with the boy band, you’ll know what scene when you see it, is very good. Dave trying to become a real man, trying to be responsible for others and himself and trying to become the best Kick Ass he can be, and Chris becoming the world’s first super villain, but not really having the temperament or the abilities. The new characters are also great, Captain Star and Stripes is great, and mildy psychotic, but also a good guy, if you can wrap your head around that, and Mother Russia, played by Olga Kurkulinam is huge and violent and fabulous. The fight between her and Hit Girl will be a cult classic for years to come. I love this film and hope against hope that they make a third instalment so we can see where Kick Ass and Hit Girl end up. I’m sure it’ll be as explosive as this film.

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Film Review: Releasing September 6th

We’re the Millers 6/10 Starring Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston and Emma Roberts Directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber

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avid (Jason Sudeikis) is a thirty year old pot dealer, just living for having fun and smoking pot, but when he’s hijacked and they steal all his money and the pot he was supposed to sell he’s in major trouble. His boss, Brad Gurdlinger (Ed Helms) tells him to go to Mexico and smuggle some merchandise into the country or he’s going to kill him. Of course David agrees, but how to smuggle drugs without being busted? Then he figures it out. He hires his stripper next door neighbour, Rose (Jennifer Aniston), a really

dorky kid that lives in the building Kenny (Will Poulter) and a homeless girl from the neighbourhood, Casey (Emma Roberts) to pretend to be his family so he can drive an RV out of Mexico with the drugs on board. Everything goes according to plan until he discovers that there is a lot more dope than Brad had told him. Then he discovers that the dope didn’t belong to Brad at all, and that he and the family have, in fact, ripped off a Mexican drug dealer, who is now hot on their heels. I found this film really funny. Yes, almost every one of the jokes are below the belt, it is crude and disgusting at times, but that is the kind of film you expect when you go to see a Jason Sudeikis film. The family moments are really sweet and the actors all carry their roles well. If you like this type of comedy then you will get something out of this film, but if you didn’t like the Hangover films, then you’ll probably not get into this one either.

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Film Review: Releasing September 13th The Way, Way Back 9/10

Starring Steve Carell, Toni Collette and Allison Janney Directed by Nat Faxon and Jim Rash

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hen Duncan (Liam James) is dragged along with his mother, Pam (Toni Collette), her new boyfriend, Trent (Steve Carell) and his daughter, Steph (Zoe Levin) to Trent’s beach house for Fourth of July weekend, he’s understandably miserable about it, especially since Trent doesn’t seem to like him very much. He mopes around, reading, singing songs on the roof of Trent’s car, and trying to avoid all contact until he finds himself at Water Wizz Water Park. He wanders in one day and the park manager, Owen (Sam Rockwell) takes pity on the poor, extremely shy boy. He gives Duncan a job at the park and his real summer begins as the madcap group of people who work at the park introduce him to the joys of life, teach him how to stand up for himself, and even give him a chance at the girl of his dreams

(Annasophia Robb), who happens to be living next door. This is really sweet coming of age story. James shines as a highly shy and out of place young man who finds himself in amongst these very odd characters inside the park. Robb is grumpy and beautiful as the typical teen angst ridden girl who befriends Duncan and becomes his love interest. Rockwell is back at his wise cracking best as the unlikely hero of the piece, the man that gives Duncan the courage to be himself and stand up for himself. Collette gives another solid performance as a mom trying to be a woman and a mom at the same time, not an easy thing, and Carell is great as a really mean, horrible character, not something we’ve seen him do before, but he does it really well. The star of the show, though, is Allison Janney, who plays Robb’s mother, and a raging alcoholic. She is delightful and simply steals every scene that she’s in. If you like dramatic films with a lot of heart then this one is for you.

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Film Review: Releasing September 13th 2 Guns 8/10

Starring Denzel Washington, Mark Wahlberg and Paula Patton Directed by Baltasar Kormákur

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EA agent Bobby Trench (Denzel Washington) and naval intelligence Officer Michael ‘Stig’ Stigman (Mark Wahlberg) are working the same case, trying to bring down a drug kingpin named Papi Greco (Edward James Olmos), but they don’t know that. They’re both under cover and under the assumption that the other is a bad guy, so when they come up with a plan to rob the bank that contains Papi’s money, they both plan on turning the other in after it’s done. Bobby’s plan goes to hell when the backup that was supposed to catch them coming out the bank doesn’t show up, and Stig’s plan goes to hell when his commanding

officer (James Marsden) turns on him and tries to kill him. So now Bobby and Stig have to team up again to try and beat the bad guys and stay alive long enough to figure out what’s going on, but things get far worse when they discover that the money didn’t belong to Papi at all. It belonged to someone a lot more dangerous. If you like shoot-em up action films then you’ll get a kick out of this one. The action comes thick and fast from the very first moment and it doesn’t relent until the final credits role. The story is interesting, with enough twists and turns to keep you guessing and Washington and Wahlberg are wonderful together. The best part of the film is the script and the quick one liners that Wahlberg delivers throughout. Make sure you listen very closely because they are really funny. Any fan of Wahlberg, Washington, or just of good action flicks should see this film.

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Film Review: Releasing September 13th Felix 7/10

Starring Hlayani Junior Mabasa, Linda Sokhulu and Dame Janet Suzman Directed by Roberta Durrant

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hen Felix (Hlayani Junior Mabasa) wins a scholarship to a prestigious private school he’s thrilled, but as soon as he arrives he realises that things aren’t going to be the way he imagined. From the very first moment the other boys pick on him and look down on him because he doesn’t come from money. He comes to the conclusion that he needs to figure out a way to show that he’s just as good as the rest of them, but since it’s not going to be on the rugby field, he tries to get involved in the school musical production, but the vice principal doesn’t think the penny whistle is suitable for his jazz recital. At first this is a major issue for Felix, until he discovers his father’s saxophone sitting in a suitcase on top of a cupboard. He approaches Old Joe, a man who used to play with his father, but his mother (Linda Sokhulu) is very much against him playing. Can he get her to understand his passion, or will he need to let it go forever?

This is very sweet film with a very sweet story and the music is really great, played by a remarkably talented young man, but it does have a few problems. I felt that it is a little too close to Spud, another South African film about a little boy going to a ritzy private school. The scene where Felix and his mother walked to the school is little too Spudish. Then there’s the acting. It isn’t bad, not by any means, but it just isn’t natural enough for me. It looks like the actors are acting and it makes a lot of the motional scenes seem very forced, instead of being organic and completely believable. It is a bit of a pity in, what should have been, a really good film. If you enjoyed Spud then you should enjoy this film as well, or if you just want a sweet heart felt film, this is not bad.

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GI Joe: Retaliation 8/10 Starring Dwayne Johnson, DJ Cotrona and Adrianne Palicki Directed by Jon M.Chu When the Joe’s are set up by the president (Jonathan Pryce), who is the evil Zartan (Arnold Vosloo) in disguise, only Roadblock (Dwayne Johnson), Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki) and Flint (DJ Cotrona) survive. They set out on a mission to discover who was behind the set up and get revenge for their fallen brothers. Along the way they are reunited with Snake Eyes (Ray Park) and Storm Shadow (Byung-Hun Lee) who has changed sides to get revenge on Zartan as well. The sequel to the 2009 hit this is a very different film. Gone is the video game feel and the constant wise cracking. This time the Joes are grittier, meaner and a lot more violent. If you like war films filled with action then you’ll like this one, if you prefer your action more video game-esque, then this isn’t the one for you.

Extracted 7/10 Starring Sasha Roiz, Dominic Bogart and Jenny Mollen Directed by Nir Paniry Tom (Shasha Roiz) develops a machine that allows him to enter memories. When the funding dries up he makes a deal with the prison system to use the machine to enter criminals minds, but the first time he uses it, on Anthon (Dominic Bogart), a man accused of killing his girlfriend, something goes wrong and Tom gets trapped in Anthony’s head. He’s there for over four years until, completely by chance, he discovers that Anthony can see him in his memories. Together they team up to get Tom out, but then Anthony begins to think tha he’s innocent of the crime and needs Tom’s help. This film is a lot better than I expected it to be. It’s a little slow and some sections go on a little longer than they should, but it’s clever and interesting and actually an enjoyable watch.

DVD Reviews

Breaking the Girls 4/10 Starring Agnes Bruckner, Madeline Zima and Shawn Ashmore Directed by Jamie Babbit When Sara (Agnes Bruckner) meets Alex (Madeline Zima) she’s drawn to her straight away. Sara is pretty quiet, working several jobs and trying to get through college, while Alex is overly confident, rich and seriously wild. The two become friends quickly and even fool around, but when Alex suggests a Strangers on a Train scenario whereby she will kill Sara’s enemy if Sara will kill her step mother, Sara thinks it’s just a joke. It’s only when Brooke (Shanna Collins) is strangled does Sara realise that Alex was deadly serious. This should have been a taut, exciting thriller, but it ends up being boring and tedious. The story is generic and even with a few interesting twists and turns and a good performance by Zima, this is not a film I would watch again. Rather watch Wild Things, or Stranger on a Train.

Kill ‘Em All 5/10

Starring Johnny Messner, Chia Hui Loi and Joe Lewis Directed by Raimund Huber Several of the world best assassins, including Gabriel (Johnny Mesner), Som (Ammara Siripong) and Kid (Tim Man) are drugged and locked together in a large warehouse before a disembodied voice tells them that they need to battle, gladiator style, and the last man standing will escape. They fight, at first, but then they decide to join forces and go after the man that captured them and make him pay. Standing between them and him is an army of mutants and ninjas, so they do the obvious. They kill ‘em all. This is strictly for the martial arts action junkies. The story is silly, what is even existent, the acting is shoddy, put it kindly, and the effects are seriously subpar. I will say the fighting is good, especially Man, but only watch this is there is absolutely nothing else.

Off The Screen Magazine

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Off the screen magazine september 2013