Vote for ‘The Popcorn Muncher’ in the UK Blog Awards 2015

16 Nov

The Popcorn Muncher is entered into the UK Blog Awards 2015

Over the past couple of years, my team of guest writers and I have been working hard to make The Popcorn Muncher as good a film blog as it can possibly be.

This year, The Popcorn Muncher is entered in the UK Blog Awards, in two categories – ‘Young Persons’ and ‘Arts & Culture’. We need you to give us a hand as part of the public vote stage of the competition.

By clicking the links below, you can vote for The Popcorn Muncher in each of the two categories using any valid email address.

Arts & Culture     –     Young Persons

Thank you for voting and I would love it if you could share this post on Facebook and Twitter, using the hashtag #UKBA15.

Review – Nightcrawler

28 Nov

Poster for 2014 dramatic thriller Nightcrawler

Genre: Thriller
Certificate: 15
UK Release Date: 31st October 2014
Runtime: 117 minutes
Director: Dan Gilroy
Writer: Dan Gilroy
Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Riz Ahmed, Rene Russo, Bill Paxton
Synopsis: An ambitious man with a conspicuous lack of morals pursues a career in the murky underground art of shooting graphic crime and accident footage for television news.



The career of Jake Gyllenhaal is in an interesting place right now. Having done his share of leading man roles and pretty boy characters, he is now doing incredibly interesting projects such as End of Watch and Enemy. Nightcrawler – a sordid tale of illicit filming and television journalism – is the latest of those projects and an excellent journey into the dark heart of Gyllenhaal’s career.

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Analysis – The Babadook as a study of human grief and bereavement

27 Nov

Essie Davis portrays a grieveing mother in Aussie horror The Babadook

In the midst of the usual dreck that fills cinemas over the Halloween period, there was something special this year. That special film was Australian chiller The Babadook, from first-time director Jennifer Kent. With plenty to think about under the surface, it’s one of the best horror films of the last few years.

As well as being a psychological horror movie, The Babadook is an in-depth study of the ways in which human beings deal with grief and loss. Through the great performances of Essie Davis and Noah Wiseman, the film says an awful lot whilst showing very little on screen.

Note: Do not read past this point until you’ve seen the film.

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Review – Ouija

27 Nov

Poster for 2014 horror film Ouija

Genre: Horror
Certificate: 15
UK Release Date: 31st October 2014
Runtime: 89 minutes
Director: Stiles White
Writer: Stiles White, Juliet Snowden
Starring: Olivia Cooke, Ana Coto, Daren Kagasoff, Douglas Smith, Bianca A Santos, Lin Shaye, Shelley Hennig 
Synopsis: A group of teenagers repeatedly uses a spirit board to try and communicate with their dead friend after her sudden, mysterious suicide.



The Halloween season of 2014 was more interesting than most, with Horns and The Babadook providing an antidote to the usual bland jump scares. Providing the poison is terrible supernatural chiller Ouija, which comes from Hasbro, Platinum Dunes and shit-shovelling producer extraordinaire Michael Bay.

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Review – Mr Turner

26 Nov

Poster for 2014 biographical drama Mr Turner

Genre: Biopic
Certificate: 12
UK Release Date: 31st October 2014
Runtime: 150 minutes
Director: Mike Leigh
Writer: Mike Leigh
Starring: Timothy Spall, Dorothy Atkinson, Paul Jesson, Marion Bailey, Ruth Sheen, Lesley Manville, Joshua McGuire 
Synopsis: British artist JMW Turner pursues romance and innovations in the form of painting as he enters the final few decades of his life.



It’s nearly awards season time, so the historical biopics are coming out in force. First out of the blocks is Mike Leigh’s Mr Turner, which traces the life of JMW Turner – one of Britain’s most decorated and famous painters. In the lead role is Timothy Spall, with a performance that scooped the Best Actor prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

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Review – Horns

26 Nov

Poster for 2014 dark fantasy Horns

Genre: Fantasy
Certificate: 15
UK Release Date: 29th October 2014
Runtime: 120 minutes
Director: Alexandre Aja
Writer: Keith Bunin
Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Juno Temple, Max Minghella, Joe Anderson, Heather Graham, Kelli Garner
Synopsis: After his girlfriend’s murder, a young man is vilified by the press. He then grows bizarre horns on his head that let him hear people’s dark thoughts.



Of all of the major Harry Potter alumni, Daniel Radcliffe has had the most varied career since the end of the franchise. Following horror film The Woman In Black, historical drama Kill Your Darlings and quirky romcom What If, the former boy wizard takes centre stage in the interesting and bizarre dark fantasy Horns.

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Review – Love, Rosie

26 Nov

Poster for 2014 romcom Love, Rosie

Genre: Romcom
Certificate: 15
UK Release Date: 22nd October 2014
Runtime: 102 minutes
Director: Christian Ditter
Writer: Juliette Towhidi
Starring: Lily Collins, Sam Claflin, Suki Waterhouse, Jaime Winstone, Christian Cooke, Tamsin Egerton 
Synopsis: Two best friends fail to realise their love for each other throughout adolescence, until adult life starts to get in the way of them.



It’s easy to be snarky about romcoms. It’s even easier when they have a horrible “people defying gravity with leaning and cuddles” poster. With that said, it would be the simplest thing in the world to savage Love, Rosie for its commitment to the romcom formula, particularly as it adapts a novel by Cecelia Ahern of P.S. I Love You fame. However, that would do a disservice to a fun little movie that has its heart in the right place and its tongue firmly in cheek.

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Review – Fury

24 Nov

Poster for 2014 war movie Fury

Genre: War
Certificate: 15
UK Release Date: 22nd October 2014
Runtime: 134 minutes
Director: David Ayer
Writer: David Ayer
Starring: Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeouf, Michael Pena, Jon Bernthal, Alicia von Rittberg, Jason Isaacs
Synopsis: The crew of a WW2 tank battle to stay alive in the dying days of the conflict as they fight deep within Nazi Germany.



Filmmaker David Ayer has made unflinching realism his trademark. With cop thrillers Training Day and End of Watch, he has carved out as a niche as a man capable of portraying humanity with all of its imperfections in sharp focus. His latest film, Fury, brings that realism to a tight-knit band of brothers at the helm of a tank in the dying days of the Second World War.

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