James Moran's job is to watch films so you don't have to - and he doesn't even watch them, so everyone's happy.
This week, he uses his no-compromises, no-facts approach to preview some upcoming releases for 2012.
Resident Evil 9
In a post-post-zombie apocalypse world, a series of fit girls encounter their greatest terror: unreasonable tenants. Milla Jovovich returns as the sexy-with-a-twist (the twist is nudity) Alice, who becomes the landlord to a series of semi-detached houses containing mardy occupants. One particularly CGI-heavy shot in previews was an argument over whether mildew in the bathroom counts as a pre-existing problem with the property.
The Girl With the Something, or Whatever
A film in which director David Fincher is made to direct literally nothing. A terrible conspiracy (or similar) is uncovered in a snowy place, leading to events in a series of other locations, some without snow, others with. The flick is rumoured to feature named characters and a soundtrack, ingeniously combined to create the illusion of content.
Baseball manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) wins the day through maths and being unreasonable to his colleagues. I've seen an advanced preview in my mind, and all the hallmarks of an Aaron Sorkin hero are there- talking fast, not fully explaining yourself, interrupting people, telling people they're idiots. This time, by completely removing the baseball element from the first film, Sorkin is able to depict a man shouting at people about nothing, with a sad bit at the end.
Liam Neeson (Liam Neeson) is trapped on a boat being attacked by ancient forcefieldy alien robots or something, whilst trying to get through to his acting agent. In one almost unbelievably tense scene, Neeson faces a formable attack (squares B3, D9, A1 followed by A2), which he only just manages to fight off (C4, C5, C6, C7, C8, C9). The film features Megan Fox or an equivalent human female.
The Lovely Dread Lord
The underdog story of Genghis Khan, a man who ruled with an iron fist and pillaged many lands - but who also often got a rumbly tummy. Trying to make it as a Borjigin tribesman in a Khwarezmian tribesman's world, the film beutifully avoids showing us the effects of Khan's rule or why people opposed him (which the screenwriter rightly dubs "boring"). Instead, it focuses on Jim Broadbent's magically avuncular performance. Biggest tearjerker: as his horde lays waste to the peaceful mountain folk of Kashgar, Khan puts his shoes on the wrong way round, leading him to stumble and nearly fall into a pile of burning villagers. Not a dry eye in the house.
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