Latest articles from Dan

Blades of Glory - DVD
3.0 stars Blades of Glory - DVD By Dan Hall

Such is his popularity at present that only four words - Will Ferrell does NASCAR – were required to convince Sony to commission his last project, the $150 million making Taladega Nights. And so, treading a similar path, we now have "Will Ferrell does... Read more

Gone  - DVD
3.5 stars Gone - DVD By Dan Hall

Gone is a low budget Brit thriller that sees a post university backpacking holiday turn into “Dead Calm in the desert” for two 20-something love birds. Evans (best known for his work in series two of Teachers) plays Alex, a ginger Scouser – it’s... Read more

Catch a Fire - DVD
3.0 stars Catch a Fire - DVD By Dan Hall

Catch a Fire is the true story of political activist Patrick Chamusso who was sentenced to 24 years in prison after attempting to blow up a South African oil refinery in 1980. Derek “Antwone Fisher” Luke plays Chamusso, a loving husband and father... Read more

The Illusionist - DVD
3.0 stars The Illusionist - DVD By Dan Hall

You wait years for a movie about early nineteenth century magicians to come along and then, hey presto, two turn up at once. Hot on the heels of Christopher Nolan's "The Prestige" comes the big screen adaptation of Steven Millhauser's short story "Eisenheim... Read more

Ghost Rider  - DVD
2.0 stars Ghost Rider - DVD By Dan Hall

After hearing that his chain-smoking old man is about to die from lung cancer (someone really should warn people that these things aren’t good for them!) motorcycle stunt rider Johnny Blaze (Cage) makes a deal with Mephistopheles (Fonda) to save his... Read more

The Good Shepherd - DVD
3.5 stars The Good Shepherd - DVD By Dan Hall

Edward Wilson (Matt Damon) is a high flyer at Yale University in 1939 when he is recruited to join the American secret service. His hidden life gives him first hand experience of the Second World War and the Soviet expansion into Eastern Europe while... Read more

Blood Diamond - DVD
4.0 stars Blood Diamond - DVD By Dan Hall

Set amid the carnage of the Sierra Leone civil war of the late-1990s, Blood Diamond tells the story of Solomon Vandy (Hounsou), a Mende fisherman forced into slavery after his village is decimated by rebel guerrillas. Put to work in the diamond mines,... Read more

The Fountain - DVD
4.0 stars The Fountain - DVD By Dan Hall

Loved by some and hated by a whole lot of others, Darren Aronofsky’s latest movie is every bit as weird and, some would say, wonderful, as his previous highly original movies, Pi and Requiem for a Dream. Tom (Hugh Jackman) is a scientist trying to find... Read more

Hot Fuzz - DVD
4.0 stars Hot Fuzz - DVD By Dan Hall

Three years on from their big screen “Rom-Zom-Com” debut, Shaun of the Dead’s Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright are back for another slice of genre busting action in Hot Fuzz, but does it match up to its predecessor? We get watching to find out. Pegg... Read more

Apocalypto - DVD
4.0 stars Apocalypto - DVD By Dan Hall

Three years on from The Passion of the Christ, Mel Gibson returns to the director’s chair for a brutal action thriller set against the backdrop of the fall of the Mayan empire. When a savage tribe decimates a peaceful village, Jaguar Paw (Youngblood)... Read more

Infamous - DVD
4.0 stars Infamous - DVD By Dan Hall

Following directly in the footsteps of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Oscar winning turn in 2006, Toby Jones now takes on the role of Truman Capote - the famously eccentric American novelist, playwright and screenwriter - in Infamous. The story begins as... Read more

Bobby - DVD
3.5 stars Bobby - DVD By Dan Hall

Bobby follows the stories of 22 fictional characters in Los Angeles’ Ambassador Hotel on the night of June 4th 1968, when Presidential hopeful Senator Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated moments after claiming victory in the crucial California primary.... Read more

Rocky Balboa - DVD
4.0 stars Rocky Balboa - DVD By Dan Hall

Despite looking more like his mum than the Italian Stallion we remember from his Oscar-winning 1976 debut, Sly Stallone is back for his sixth, and final, outing as Rocky Balboa. Having hung up his gloves in the early-90s, Rock now spends his days regaling... Read more

Babel - DVD
3.5 stars Babel - DVD By Dan Hall

The third collaboration between Director Alejandro González Iñárritu and writer Guillermo Arriaga (Amores Perros, 21 Grams) is a multi-stranded epic, spanning three continents. A rifle shot in the African desert sparks a chain of events linking a group... Read more

The Last King of Scotland - DVD
4.5 stars The Last King of Scotland - DVD By Dan Hall

Based on Giles Foden’s best selling novel, The Last King of Scotland is an enthralling political thriller set amid the destruction of Idi Amin’s (Whitaker) murderous reign as Ugandan president during the 1970s. A mixture of fact and fiction, the story... Read more

London to Brighton - DVD
4.0 stars London to Brighton - DVD By Dan Hall

Kelly (Lorraine Stanley) is a prostitute, forced by Derek (Johnnie Harris) her bullying pimp to find a child to satisfy a ruthless gangland boss’ sexual appetite. When things turn nasty, Kelly escapes with 11-year-old Joanne (Georgia Groome) to the... Read more

Smokin' Aces - DVD
2.0 stars Smokin' Aces - DVD By Dan Hall

From the creator of gritty undercover cop thriller Narc, comes a furiously bloody action flick set in the murky underworld of the Las Vegas mafia. When Buddy “Aces” Israel (Piven), a magician and small-time crook, decides to turn state’s evidence... Read more

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer - DVD
3.5 stars Perfume: The Story of a Murderer - DVD By Dan Hall

Deemed “unfilmable” since its release in 1985, Patrick Süskind’s best-selling novel finally makes its big-screen debut after a decade in development hell that saw both Ridley Scott and Tim Burton pass on the project after showing early interest.... Read more

Black Book - DVD
3.5 stars Black Book - DVD By Dan Hall

Dutch director Paul Verhoeven's oddball career has given us classics such as Robocop and Basic Instinct, but also howlers like Showgirls. We're happy to say that Black Book is in the first camp. A beautiful Jewish singer, Rachel (Carice van Houten) is... Read more

Miss Potter - DVD
3.0 stars Miss Potter - DVD By Dan Hall

Just the sight of the name in the title may have some people clicking quickly to another review but, thankfully, this Potter film has nothing to do with the four-eyed dope that has blighted our Christmas schedules for the last 6 years. Miss Potter is... Read more

Eragon - DVD
1.0 stars Eragon - DVD By Dan Hall

Eragon is a lifeless fantasy adventure based on 15-year-old Christopher Paolini’s phenomenally successful novel, the first book in his epic “Inheritance Trilogy”. Newcomer Ed Speleers plays the titular character, a young farm boy from the mystical... Read more

Flushed Away - DVD
3.0 stars Flushed Away - DVD By Dan Hall

Aardman, the Bristol-based team behind Wallace and Gromit, join up with animation giants DreamWorks (Shrek) for their third big-screen adventure. Leading a strong list of A-List stars Hugh Jackman plays Roddy, a pet rat from a luxurious Kensington apartment... Read more

Tenacious D: In The Pick Of Destiny - DVD
2.5 stars Tenacious D: In The Pick Of Destiny - DVD By Dan Hall

Tenacious D - the folk-rock band created by Jack Black and Kyle Gass on HBO’s comedy sketch programme “The Mr. Show” - make a premature leap to the big screen in this meandering comedy written by the film’s stars. Rebelling against his puritanical... Read more

Jackass number two - DVD
4.0 stars Jackass number two - DVD By Dan Hall

Four years on from their first big screen outing, the Jackass crew are back for another 95 minutes of bone crunching, testicle crushing mayhem. Dispensing with any pretence of a plot the gung-ho gang launch themselves into a string of uproarious skits... Read more

The Heart of the Game - DVD
3.5 stars The Heart of the Game - DVD By Dan Hall

Acclaimed documentary from first time director Ward Serrill that follows a high school girls basketball team and their unconventional coach Bill Resler over a seven-year period. The story begins with Resler’s first season in charge of the Roosevelt... Read more

The Prestige - DVD
4.0 stars The Prestige - DVD By Dan Hall

Batman Begins director Christopher Nolan reunites with Christian Bale and Michael Caine for a twisted murder mystery set in the world of Victorian-era magicians. Bale plays Alfred Borden, a conjuror accused of murdering his rival, Robert Angier (Jackman),... Read more

The Queen - DVD
4.5 stars The Queen - DVD By Dan Hall

Director / writer team Stephen Frears and Peter Morgan reunite for a follow-up to their critically-lauded Channel 4 film “The Deal”, which imagined Tony Blair and Gordon Brown’s strained relationship before Labour’s 1997 election win. This sequel... Read more

Casino Royale - DVD
4.5 stars Casino Royale - DVD By Dan Hall

Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel finally hits the big screen - forget the appalling 1967 spoof - with Daniel "Layer Cake" Craig playing a younger, less polished version of the 007 portrayed by his predecessors. After a gritty black-and-white flashback... Read more

Down in the Valley - DVD
3.0 stars Down in the Valley - DVD By Dan Hall

Following the recent trend for modern-day westerns (think "Brokeback Mountain" and "Three Burials") Ed Norton’s latest is a cowboy drama set in the suburban sprawl of today’s San Fernando Valley. When high school student Tobe (Wood) meets a charming... Read more

Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan - DVD
4.5 stars Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan - DVD By Dan Hall

Jagshemash! Sacha Baron Cohen’s latest comedy creation - Kazakhstani gypsy catcher turned journalist Borat Sagdiyev – makes his big screen debut in a scathing satirical attack on bigotry, misogyny and racism in the western world. Shot on a tiny budget... Read more

Marie Antoinette - DVD
3.0 stars Marie Antoinette - DVD By Dan Hall

Sofia “Lost in Translation” Coppola presents a revisionist version of the life of Marie Antoinette (Dunst), whose disastrous reign kick-started the French Revolution in the late eighteenth century. We begin in 1769 when Antoinette, as a 14-year-old... Read more

Saw 3 - DVD
3.5 stars Saw 3 - DVD By Dan Hall

Jigsaw (Tobin Bell), the mastermind behind a series of life and death games, has escaped from the police. But he's now dying so his punk sidekick Amanda kidnaps brilliant surgeon, Dr Lynn Denlon (Bahar Soometh) to keep him alive until one last game is... Read more

Clerks 2 - DVD
4.0 stars Clerks 2 - DVD By Dan Hall

So Dante and Randall are back – great news for all lovers of the original (and it was definitely original) movie. OK, so fans of Clerks will be disappointed that the new film is in colour, has a bigger budget and is a lot slicker than the anarchically... Read more

The Departed - DVD
4.0 stars The Departed - DVD By Dan Hall

So is this Scorsese’s great film for this decade? It has most of the ingredients of his finest work – the violent world of gangsters, cops and assorted American low life on that narrow line that separates the good guys from the bad ones. Adapted from... Read more

Volver - DVD
4.0 stars Volver - DVD By Dan Hall

Sexy village girl Raimunda (Cruz) keeps the food on the table in their small Madrid apartment without much help from her drunken husband (Antonio de Torre) or teenage daughter (Yohana Cobo). Things go from bad to worse by way of a dead body in the kitchen... Read more

Accepted - DVD
1.5 stars Accepted - DVD By Dan Hall

Directorial debut from Grosse Point Blank writer Steve Pink (not to be confused with wacky radio wind-up merchant Steve Penk) that sees a group of high-school drop-outs setting up their own university because no-one else will take them. Dodgeball and... Read more

Havoc - DVD
2.0 stars Havoc - DVD By Dan Hall

After cornering the market in family fairytales such as The Princess Diaries and Ella Enchanted, some viewers were shocked to see Anne “goody-two-shoes” Hathaway getting her kit off in last year’s Brokeback Mountain. But that was nothing in comparison... Read more

Click - DVD
1.0 stars Click - DVD By Dan Hall

Michael Newman (Adam Sandler) is an over worked architect who is spending too much time at the office with his monster of a boss (David Hasselhoff) and not enough with his family. A spooky salesman called Morty (Christopher Walken) gives Sandler a “Universal... Read more

A Scanner Darkly - DVD
3.0 stars A Scanner Darkly - DVD By Dan Hall

A Scanner Darkly is a faithful adaptation of visionary author / drug-hound Philip K. Dick’s 1977 novel of the same name. The year is 2013 and the US government has finally lost its war on drugs, with 20% of the population now addicted to “Substance... Read more

The Wicker Man - DVD
1.0 stars The Wicker Man - DVD By Dan Hall

Edward Woodward starred in the original 1973 B-movie horror classic about a copper who falls foul of a group of weird religious fanatics on a remote Scottish island. This time round Californian cop Edward Malus (Nicolas Cage) gets a letter from his ex-girlfriend... Read more

World Trade Center - DVD
3.0 stars World Trade Center - DVD By Dan Hall

After the critical disaster that was Alexander, director Oliver Stone returns to the safety of home soil for a personal story of bravery and brotherhood in the aftermath of 9/11 with Word Trade Center. Nicholas Cage stars as John McLoughlin, the leader... Read more

Little Miss Sunshine - DVD
4.5 stars Little Miss Sunshine - DVD By Dan Hall

Little Miss Sunshine is a family road trip comedy that sees the dysfunctional Hoover clan embarking on a cross-country journey to California when 7-year-old Olive (Breslin) reaches the final of the prestigious “Little Miss Sunshine” beauty pageant.... Read more

Severance - DVD
3.0 stars Severance - DVD By Dan Hall

Billed as “The Office meets Deliverance” - although more like Hostel crossed with Shaun of the Dead for our money - Severance is a surprisingly entertaining British comedy-horror. Seven colleagues (led by Danny Dyer’s “Steve” who boasts “I’ve... Read more

11.14 - DVD
4.0 stars 11.14 - DVD By Dan Hall

Deliciously twisted black comedy from first time writer / director Greg Marcks that, in the style of Guillermo Arriaga’s “Amores Perros”, explores a fatal car crash from multiple perspectives. Set during the half hour preceding the accident - which... Read more

Crank - DVD
4.5 stars Crank - DVD By Dan Hall

Jason Statham cranks up the body count in an enjoyably ludicrous comedy thriller that is best described as a cross between “Speed” and 50s film noir “D.O.A.” Statham plays the brilliantly named Chev Chelios, an LA hit man who has recently hung... Read more

DOA: Dead or Alive - DVD
3.0 stars DOA: Dead or Alive - DVD By Dan Hall

DOA: Dead or Alive is a bizarrely enjoyable soft porn martial arts flick that plays out like a cross between “Charlie’s Angels” and “Enter the Dragon” and of course based on the video game of the same name. The story sees 16 of the world’s... Read more

Sonic The Hedgehog - Xbox 360
1.0 stars Sonic The Hedgehog - Xbox 360 By Dan Hall

Once upon a time, the latest Sonic was as welcome as a Scarlet Johansson nude scene. We can but dream, eh? But since the series’ transformation to 3D, we’ve approached each new release with ever increasing caution. Gameboy and DS users have had it... Read more

Children of Men - DVD
3.5 stars Children of Men - DVD By Dan Hall

Last seen directing the big-screen adaptation of J. K. Rowling’s “Prisoner of Azkaban”, Mexican Alfonso Cuaron now turns his attention to P. D. James’ dystopian sci-fi thriller (a marked change of direction from her usual crime fiction) “Children... Read more

Adrift  - DVD
2.0 stars Adrift - DVD By Dan Hall

A high-school reunion aboard a luxury yacht goes horribly wrong in this big screen debut from German director Hans Horn. After cutting Zach’s (Lange) 30th birthday cake and sinking a few celebratory cocktails, four of the group decide to have a quick... Read more

An Inconvenient Truth - DVD
4.0 stars An Inconvenient Truth - DVD By Dan Hall

Al Gore warns of an impending global apocalypse in this horrifying, yet surprisingly enthralling, environmental documentary. After his controversial defeat to George “Dubbya” in the 2000 presidential elections, Gore reinvented himself and took to... Read more