Once Upon a Time In Hollywood
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Dexterous writer-director Martin McDonagh never fails to find pitch-black comedy in the bleakest of premises, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, is no exception.
This peculiar picture charts the strategic exploits of a cranky single mother (Frances McDormand) as she tries to draw 14ft-high, 48ft-wide attention to the unsolved murder of her teenage daughter, x3.
The film takes place in a fictitious deadbeat town that's so deadbeat, it's presumably where echoes of unwanted beats come to die. This is a place populated by small men of dubious morals and intelligence, which include an amusing, bumbling Sam Rockwell and a sanctimonious Woody Harrelson in outlandish dumb cop, twat cop roles.
McDonagh has a whale of a time poking fun at these hapless, trigger-happy goons, but he never loses sight of the fact that a serious and somewhat grizzly tragedy sits at the centre of the film - not the murder, but the waning lives of Ebbing's miserable players.
Beneath the surface of an admittedly very thick, funny veneer of darkness is a series of tormented, confused souls who each get a chance to grapple with their own touching transformation, tragic misfortune, or both.
Art house master Ingmar Bergman descends into the dimly-lit depths of the human psyche in The Hour of the Wolf.
The film thrusts us into a windy world of mis-heard mysteries and mis-seen memories, teasing us with a fragmented tale of a troubled painter, his broken wife and his somewhat overbearing "ghosts."
Bit by bit, Bergman delivers a deeply unsettling portrait of psychosis, infatuation and hallucination.
A diary unleashes a skewed narrative of ghastly faces, ghostly chases and doom-ridden dinner parties, interspersed with nuggets of Mr Bergman's signature poetic wisdom.
Like our most haunting nightmares, the whole thing never quite comes together - and will never quite be forgotten.
Spectacular stunts and toe-tapping tunes find perfect harmony in Baby Driver - a film which masters a bold balancing act between the old and the new.
On one hand, writer-director Edgar Wright goes back to basics, digging up the bare bones of what used to make the action films of yesteryear great - a simple plot, real stunts, high stakes and a bunch of characters viewers can actually care about.
On the other, Wright bolsters this glorious simplicity by looking towards the future, jazzing up the classic crime caper formula with new experiments in choreography and editing.
The film's USP comes in the form of a succession of beautifully orchestrated action sequences, which see pop tunes pumped out in perfect sync with car chases, dance numbers and more.
Some may see this as gimmicky, but there's no denying it breathes life and energy into an already very entertaining mix.
What's more, Wright's approach helps to remind us that, in the right hands, the otherwise-tired action genre still has interesting places to go.
Sidney Lumet's shocking newsroom satire probably got big laughs from savvy audiences back in 1976. But in 2017, its scathing cynicism is simply too true to the hypocrisies of the day.
In the film, broadcasters capitalise on a disturbed man's ingenious rantings and ravings, which quickly become the nation's slice of 'must-see' weekly TV.
Both on and off the air, Network features some of the greatest speeches ever to grace the silver screen, many of which deconstruct and dissect the mechanics of the modern media, the dark heart of corporate capitalism, or even the inherent pain of a doomed human existence - all 'articulating the popular rage' in the manner of a modern-day politician, or even a super-hip vlogger.
Network is quite rightly often credited with predicting the direction of the modern media, and even the rise of reality TV. But there's so much more in this prescient picture that'll leave viewers thinking Sybil the Soothsayer should've been granted a screenwriting credit.
Agatha Christie's revered classic gets a snowy CGI facelift in this hyper-stylised stinker.
Director-cum-hipster-Poirot, Kenneth Branagh, leads an all-star cast all-aboard the titular train. A murder occurs, mumbo jumbo ensues and a series of seemingly unrelated vignettes enable each star to drop a couple of bad one-liners before Branagh reveals who's the baddy.
Fortunately, along the this long journey to nowhere, there's plenty of eye-popping distractions to help the heavy-nonsense narrative fade into the background. These include: a CGI Jerusalem, a CGI Istanbul, a CGI train and a non-CGI (but equally false-looking) moustache. And a woman whose face appears to be made from marzipan.
At the centre of this BRIGHT WHITE disasterpiece, however, lies one great mystery: who the fuck is the audience is supposed to be?