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Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell - Preview

Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell

Preview by Jack Foley

TO celebrate the release of the Hammer classic Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell – coming to 2-disc DVD & single-disc Blu-ray for the first ever time in the UK on April 28, 2014 – we have a copy to give away to one lucky horror fan!

The final feature film directed by the legendary Terence Fisher, Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell is a perfect, unusually gory and beautifully gothic swan song for Hammer’s incarnation of Mary Shelley’s two accursed creations.

Featuring yet another standout performance by the brilliant Peter Cushing as the mad baron, Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell is also notable for the pre-Star Wars pairing of the actors who would four years later reunite to play two of the most iconic villains in the cinematic galaxy – Darth Vader (David Prowse) and Grand Moff Tarkin (Cushing).

Synopsis

Convicted of bodysnatching and using the body parts of his ill-gotten cadavers for research, Dr. Simon Helder is sentenced to five years in an insane asylum. On arrival, he recognises the penitentiary’s resident surgeon as none other than the infamous Baron Victor Frankenstein, who has been hiding out there and continuing his research into the reanimation of corpses under the pseudonym of Dr. Carl Victor.

Recognising Helder’s surgical skills, Frankenstein enlists the young doctor as his assistant under the pretext of their tending to the medical needs of their fellow inmates.

But the reality of the situation is far more sinister. Frankenstein is already well on his way to creating a new living creature assembled from the vital organs of murdered criminals and madmen.

Buy it

Win Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell

To celebrate the release of Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell on 2-disc DVD & single-disc Blu-ray for the first ever time in the UK on April 28, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 copy. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who directs Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell?

Simply send the answer to Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

Nebraska - DVD Review

Nebraska

Review by Rob Carnevale

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

ALEXANDER Payne has long been a keen observer of dysfunctional family dynamics as evidenced by films such as The Descendants, About Schmidt and Sideways. That strong run continues with Nebraska.

A black and white road trip drama that serves as a father-son bonding experience, the film is an enjoyably involving comedy-drama that serves up two terrific leading roles for Bruce Dern and Will Forte, as well as a delicious supporting turn from June Squibb.

Dern plays tempestuous Missouri father Woody Grant who has become convinced that he’s won a million dollar magazine sweepstake and will stop at nothing to head to Nebraska to claim it, even if that means walking.

As his behaviour becomes ever more erratic and unpredictable, his son, David (Forte), grudgingly agrees to drive him there, even though he knows it’ll be a waste of time, and sets out on a journey that will ultimately help him to understand his father and his family more.

Payne’s film works on several levels. Primarily, it’s the vividly drawn characters but their journey also enables the writer-director to issue a bittersweet love song to America’s Mid-West and many of its changing landscapes and lapsing traditions. It’s beautifully shot, with the black and white cinematography from Phedon Papamichael lending it a more classic vibe.

The human drama is first-rate, too, and as subtle and rewarding as so much of Payne’s work often is. True, there are occasional laugh out loud moments, but this is more of a slow-burning comedy-drama that rewards the patient viewer.

Dern is terrific as the stubbon, beligerent old codger at the heart of proceedings, the type of dad we’d all find a nightmare, yet who exhibits traits (both good and frustrating) that we can probably all relate to in some way, while Forte is quietly compelling as the everyman son, whose own life is quietly unravelling around him. The growing bond between then two men, as they re-connect, gives rise to a genuinely touching denouement.

But there’s solid support, too, not least from the aforementioned Squibb, whose long-suffering wife walks off with a couple of the movie’s best moments (and put-downs), and who is fully deserving of the awards buzz currently surrounding her.

Stacy Keach, Bob Odenkirk and Rance Howard also make their mark in some way as various friends, acquaintances and relatives along the way.

And while Payne’s tone may ultimately err towards the melancholy (especially with its often sad observations on life), you won’t mind a bit as you’ll be so engaged in the characters that it’s a pleasure to spend time in their company.

Sincere, heartfelt and genuinely engaging, Nebraska continues to underline Payne’s reputation as one of America’s premiere filmmakers.

Certificate: 15
Running time: 110mins
UK Blu-ray & DVD Release: April 14, 2014

Win Royal Rumble 2014 on DVD

Royal Rumble 2014

CATCH all of the action from the Consol Energy Center Pittsburgh as 30 WWE Superstars competed in the Royal Rumble match for the chance to face the WWE World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania 30!

As well as the Rumble itself, this year’s event also features WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Randy Orton, defending his title against John Cena, Brock Lesnar vs. Big Show, Daniel Bryan vs. Bray Wyatt, and Cody Rhodes & Goldust vs. The New Age Outlaws!

To support the release of Royal Rumble 2014 (out on DVD and Blu-ray from April 14, 2014), we have a copy on DVD to give away to one lucky winner (courtesy of FremantleMedia International).

Visit the website

Win Royal Rumble 2014 on DVD

To celebrate the release of Royal Rumble 2014 on Blu-ray and DVD on Monday, April 14, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 copy. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who do the New Age Outlaws fights in Royal Rumble 2014?

Simply send the answer to Royal Rumble 2014 competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

Revenge For Jolly - Preview

Revenge for Jolly

Preview by Jack Foley

TO celebrate the release of Revenge For Jolly on DVD and Blu-Ray from Anchor Bay, we have a fantastic opportunity for you to win a DVD copy for yourself!

Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids), Ryan Phillippe (Damages) and Elijah Wood (Maniac) star in the ultra-violent and gratuitously gory actioner, Revenge For Jolly, from the executive producer of Machete and Black Swan and directed by Chadd Harbold.

Don’t miss your chance to win the action-packed, hilariously violent and boasting a subtle, cynical wit, Revenge For Jolly which features a killer cast and some of the blackest humour we’ve ever come across. Almost certainly destined for cult status, this is a great “late-night, kicking back with your friends and going along for the ride” kind of movie.

Synopsis

Harry (Petsos) is having the very worst kind of day. Deeply in debt to the wrong kind of people and harbouring thoughts of skipping town, he returns home from an all-night drinking binge with his cousin, Cecil (Isaac), to discover his little dog, Jolly, has been brutally murdered.

Broken-hearted and beyond consolation at the loss of the only source of light in his desperately bleak and solitary existence, Harry vows to track down the culprits and exact unmerciful revenge upon their sorry asses.

Armed with an impressive and deadly arsenal of firepower in the boot of their car, the two cousins embark on a frenzied, alcohol-fuelled orgy of violent retribution, leaving no stone unturned in their search for the canine’s killer.

Win Revenge for Jolly on DVD

To celebrate the release of Revenge For Jolly on Blu-ray Double Play on Monday, April 14, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 copy. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who directs Revenge for Jolly?

Simply send the answer to Revenge For Jolly competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

Studio Ghilbi's Pom Poko - Preview

Pom Poko

Preview by Jack Foley

FROM the acclaimed director of Grave Of The Fireflies and available for the first time on Blu-ray in stunning high-definition, Pom Poko is a unique window into Japanese folklore, a comedy of modern failings, and an elegiac tale of unlikely heroes fighting insurmountable odds.

As civilisation draws ever nearer to their idyllic forest home, a group of mischievous Japanese tanuki raccoons try to scare humans away. But they soon discover that man is not their only rival in the struggle for their age-old territory.

Originally released in 1994 as the Japanese economy slumped but looking back to the sixties construction boom in Tokyo’s Tama Hills, POM POKO questions the money-grabbing ethics of yuppie Japan, and mourns the loss of the countryside.

Drawing on Japanese myths and legends, writer and director Isao Takahata presents a satirical view of woodland spirits using every available magical ruse to take on the modern developers: including transformations, sabotage and trickery.

Pok Poko was created at the legendary Japanese animation film studio, Studio Ghilbi. Critically acclaimed, Pom Poko won the award for Best Animated Feature Film at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival in 1995 and has become a cult classic for Japanese audiences and fans of anime alike.

Celebrated for its clever visual design and its smooth animation, Pom Poko tells the ever-occurring story of age-old traditions clashing with the fast paced developments and trappings of modern society.

A cult classic, Pom Poko is a slapstick and-at-times gritty comedy taking a metaphorical swipe at Japanese society, restored to delight new audiences.

Studio Ghibli’s Pom Poko is released on Blu-ray Double Play on Monday, April 14, 2014, courtesy of StudioCanal.

Win Pom Poko on Blu-ray

To celebrate the release of Studio Ghibli’s Pom Poko on Blu-ray Double Play on Monday, April 14, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 of 3 copies. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who directs Pom Poko?

Simply send the answer to Pom Poko competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

Fill The Void - Preview

Fill The Void

Preview by Jack Foley

EIGHTEEN-year-old Shira, an Orthodox Hassid living in Tel Aviv, is looking forward to marrying a handsome, promising boy of her own age.

But when her elder sister dies in childbirth and the father considers leaving Israel to re-marry, Shira’s mother proposes a union between her daughter and son-in-law to keep her only grandchild in the country.

Shira must then make the terrible choice between her heart’s desire and her family duty…As tense and gripping as any thriller, this fascinating insight into a largely closed-off world is a breathtaking exploration of the struggle between family bonds and individual freedom.

A stunning debut feature from US-Israeli director Rama Burshtein that has garnered innumerable festival awards, including an incredible SEVEN Israeli Academy Awards as well as Best Actress at the Venice Film Festival, Fill The Void is released on Blu-ray and DVD on Monday, April 14, 2014.

Win Fill The Void on DVD

To celebrate the release of Fill The Void on Blu-ray and DVD on Monday, April 14, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 of 3 copies on DVD. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who directs Fill The Void?

Simply send the answer to Fill The Void competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

Certificate: U
Running time: 91mins
UK Blu-ray & DVD Release: April 14, 2014

Win Homefront on DVD

Homefront

British hard man Jason Statham takes on Hollywood heavyweight James Franco in the action blockbuster Homefront.

Based on the acclaimed Chuck Logan novel of the same name, Homefront stars Jason Statham (Fast & Furious 6, The Expendables 2) as Phil Broker, a former DEA agent who retreats with his family to a quiet town in order to escape his unhappy past. Unfortunately his past has other plans.

Supported by an all-star cast including James Franco (127 Hours), Winona Ryder (The Iceman, Black Swan), Kate Bosworth (Movie 43, Superman Returns) and Rachelle Lefevre (White House Down, The Twilight Saga), Homefront is a thrilling ride sure to have audiences on the edge of their seats.

Synopsis

Former drug enforcement agent, Phil Broker (Statham) is a family man who moves off the grid with his daughter, to a seemingly quiet bayou backwater to escape his troubled past. However, Broker’s world soon becomes anything but quiet once he discovers that an underbelly of drugs and violence riddles the small town.

Soon, a sociopathic methamphetamine kingpin, Gator Bodine (Franco) puts Broker and his daughter in harm’s way forcing Broker back into action in order to save his family and the town.

Homefront is released on DVD and Blu-ray on March 31 and features exclusive extras including making-of featurettes and a selection of deleted scenes.

Read our review

To celebrate the release of Homefront on Blu-ray and DVD on Monday, March 31, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 on 3 copies on DVD. Simply answer the following question…
Question

Q. Who wrote the screenplay for Homefront (Clue, the answer is in our review)?

A) Chuck Logan
B) Sylvester Stallone
C) James Franco

Simply send the answer to Homefront competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

G.B.F - Preview

G.B.F

Preview by Jack Foley

MEET Tanner and Brent. They are two gay best friends. Brent longs for the spotlight and believes that coming out will make him instantly popular as North Gateway High’s very first G.B.F. (or Gay Best Friend).

Tanner on the other hand, would rather fly under the radar and finish high school without ever being noticed.

When things don’t go according to plan and Tanner is outed instead of Brent, the two boys go from B.F.Fs to instant frenemies. Enter the three most popular girls in school — queen-of-mean bombshell Fawcett, drama club diva Caprice, and sweet, Mormon good-girl ‘Shley, who launch an all-out social war to win Tanner’s friendship.

G.B.F features an all-star cast including Andrea Bowen (Desperate Housewives), Megan Mullally (Will & Grace), Natasha Lyonne (Orange Is The New Black), Sasha Pieterse (Pretty Little Liars) and Evanna Lynch (Harry Potter). It is from Darren Stein, the director of cult ’90s teen movie Jawbreaker, and is best described as a comic satire of American high school clique culture in the vein of Mean Girls and Clueless.

Order it from Amazon l Order from Play

G.B.F is available on DVD & Blu-ray from Monday, April 14, 2014.

Win G.B.F on DVD

To celebrate the release of G.B.F on Blu-ray and DVD on April 14, 2014, IndieLondon is offering readers the chance to win 1 of 2 copies on DVD. Simply answer the following question…

Q. Who directs G.B.F?

Simply send the answer to GBF competition and include your name, address, telephone number and email

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug - DVD Review

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Review by Rob Carnevale

IndieLondon Rating: 3 out of 5

PETER Jackson’s second entry into The Hobbit trilogy may represent an improvement on An Unexpected Journey but it still falls some way short of the achievements of his Lord of the Rings series. Worse, it’s still bloated and unnecessarily drawn out.

The Desolation of Smaug does, at the very least, boast some impressive set pieces and some really good effects. But the feeling remains that stretching this particular Tolkien tale out to three movies was a folly.

The story continues the quest by the dwarves (accompanied by Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf) to reclaim Erebor, the homeland, from Smaug the dragon but finds them encountering enemies in the form of Orcs, giant spiders and scheming Middle Earth politicians (of Elvian and Laketown variety).

En route, Bilbo (once more well played by Martin Freeman) finds himself grappling with the darker elements of his new-found ring, while dwarf leader Thorin (a solid Richard Armitage) attempts to get to grips with his own mighty destiny and not become corrupted along the way.

Gandalf (Sir Ian McKellen), meanwhile, finds himself called to investigate a new emerging evil with the help of fellow wizard Radagast (Sylvester McCoy).

Jackson’s film begins well, storming out of the blocks with a couple of rousing set pieces (involving those aforementioned spiders and a river escape in wine barrels). But it then becomes bogged down with needless exposition, pointless new characters and the same self-indulgent tendencies that so bedevilled the first film.

And while it’s good to see the likes of Rings favourite Legolas (Orlando Bloom) back in the fray, his presence – and that of his Elf colleagues, including Evangeline Lilly’s newly invented Tauriel – do underline the film’s shortcomings as their presence quite often feels like padding. Lilly, in particular, may acquit herself well during the physical battle sequences, but a love interest between Tauriel and a dwarf is a serious drag on the film’s momentum.

Similarly, the eagerly-anticipated conclusion, in which Smaug is finally and impressively unveiled (and voiced with suitably scheming menace by Benedict Cumberbatch), is broken up with a couple of other action sequences that – again – interrupt the otherwise smooth flow of the action.

Hence, for everything that works in The Desolation of Smaug (effects, Freeman, Armitage, Luke Evans and McKellen), there’s plenty that doesn’t (Stephen Fry, Lilly, romances, et al). What’s more, there’s still a significant majority of the dwarves themselves who remain either unrecognisable from one another or poorly drawn in terms of character. If there is to be an emotional arc to their story, it has yet to really manifest itself.

This isn’t to say that The Desolation of Smaug is terrible. Indeed, there are times when it successfully channels the memory of the far superior Rings trilogy. But there are equally plenty more occasions when Jackson perhaps needed to step back and re-consider the lean, action-packed nature of the book from which he is adapting.

As good as this sequel is in places, it still has to rate as bloated and, eventually, patience sapping. And that’s coming from a huge admirer of The Lord of the Rings movies.

Certificate: 12A
Running time: 161mins
UK Blu-ray & DVD Release: April 7, 2014

Disney's Frozen - DVD Review

Frozen

Review by Rob Carnevale

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

IT MAY sound like a contradiction but Disney’s Frozen is a film to warm the cockles of your heart!

Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen and co-directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee, this offers a hugely enjoyable mix of Disney tradition, subtle genre subversion, top-drawer animation, lively songs and memorable characters. It’s a film the whole family can enjoy that already looks destined for classic status.

The story follows two sisters, Anna (voiced by Kristen Bell) and Elsa (Idina Menzel) whose close sibling bond is threatened by the latter’s ability to turn anything she touches into ice.

Separated by wary parents keen to keep Elsa’s power a secret, the two are eventually reunited at Elsa’s coronation. But when Anna inadvertently exposes her sister’s power, prompting Elsa to flee and turn their magical kingdom into ice, she faces a race against time to be reunited and break the spell.

In doing so, she enlists the help of a rugged ice salesman, Kristoff (Jonathan Groff), his loyal reindeer and a hapless, eternally optimistic snowman named Olaf (Josh Gad).

Disney’s latest deserves credit for the way in which it embraces classic elements of animations old (from princesses to true love’s kisses) with elements that feel fresh and contemporary (whether in its use of a feisty heroine or knowing humour).

It also takes time to create characters that are worth caring about, with vocal performers Bell, Menzel and Goff all putting in good work.

The scene-stealers are, of course, Olaf and Sven, the reindeer, who steal all of the very best lines or moments – although a family of loveable trolls also come close whenever they appear.

But this is the type of film that endears on just about every level, whether in its beautiful animations, catchy songs or sustained ability to keep you interested with character development and even the odd twist. It’s a fun romp of a film that looks set to enjoy a very long life.

Certificate: PG
Running time: 100mins
UK Blu-ray & DVD Release: March 31, 2014