'The Wolf of Wall Street' is, by many standards, a good film. Sure, it follows all of the predictable plot beats that any given "money and drugs in the Eighties" flick entails, but it makes up for its lack of narrative surprises with its strong central performances and highly stylised depictions of excess.
I have compiled my very own top 10 list that's based on quality, quintessence and originality as well of course as entertainment. The following list is not recommended for people who refuse to watch films with subtitles because they 'can't read and watch a film at the same time' or for people who 'don't do' black and white.
Bucking the trend of "seeing the thing you are writing about", James Moran walks around HMV and draws his own conclusions. These are the reviews The Powers That Be (informed, paid reviewers) don't want you to see/don't even know about. This week, if you're looking for a Christmas gift DVD special look no further. Well, actually, look further down this page.
It is 2009 and an American cargo ship is heading through international waters. Plain sailing? Not quite. This is a ship that will need to steer around the Horn of Africa, a notorious hotspot for knave Somali pirate boats. Based on a true story, director Paul Greengrass ably documents a harrowing hijacking incident of nerve-shredding terror.
A few things will happen while watching Gravity. Your palms will become sweaty, then they may seek comfort at the sides of your face. You'll feel isolated, alone. Little wonder your breathing will become shallow. With your body empathising with the characters, this is clearly not the sort of film you can ignore.
The first third of Riddick drags like a wet bank holiday Monday, or a party political broadcast in bullet time. Despite being stranded on a planet full of a ravenous dingo-type predators, our hero manages to fend them off, pinches one of the cubs/puppies (reminiscent of Scrappy-Doo in the Scooby-Doo live-action version), and clashes with assorted scorpion-like beasts.
As director Neill Blomkamp says in the foreword, this book offers a "peek behind the curtain" of the film's journey to the big screen. He discusses his influences and thinking behind the making of the film - and we get to see some of the 3,000 pieces of concept art that were made even before anyone walked onto a set.