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Directed and written by David Ayer
Starring Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBoeuf, Jason Isaacs, Michel Peña, and Scott Eastwood

In April 1945, World War II seems to be coming to an end, yet for the crewmembers of an American tank, the horrors and dangers of war continue as they face their daily mission in German territory. Leading the mission is the fierce Sergeant Collier, who finds Ellison, a simple soldier on his first mission, a part of his crew. 

The cruelty of war -- which is described emblematically through Sergeant Wardaddy Collier's words, "Ideals are peaceful; history is violent" -- is seen through the eyes of a greenhorn. Although this is nothing new, Ayer (who also made Training Day and the first Fast & Furious) tells the story in the restricted space of the passenger compartment of an army tank, which will become home, fort, and, perhaps, tomb to five men.

That the viewer knows he finds himself in… click here to read whole article and make comments


FRIDAY, 19 JUNE 2015

Jurassic World

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Jurassic World

Directed by Colin Trevorrow
Starring Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Vincent D’Onofrio, and Omar Sy

Twenty years after the tragedy that forced it to close, the dinosaur park has now reopened.  It is more spectacular and ambitious than ever before, thanks to the investment of a rich Indian man who, on paper, wants to give everyone the possibility of becoming aware of the smallness of man compared to nature. Yet, in reality, he hides a less worthy deal with the army to use the park “monsters” for military purposes.

As expected, precisely when the manager of the park (Claire)’s nephews visit, the new attraction— a genetically modified dinosaur— escapes, scattering death across the island. The only one capable of stopping the killer dinosaur is Owen, a former marine in charge of training a team of vicious velociraptors—a dangerous weapon that will come in handy in the… click here to read whole article and make comments



Oscar-nominated Timbuktu: right at the heart of the world

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A tracking shot of a gazelle running across the northern Mali desert. Shattering gunshots. A van of men is chasing the beast, concerned not to kill, but to exhaust and capture it. More gunshots: traditional wooden statues are blown to bits in the sand.

These armed marauders are jihadists arriving from Libya and other countries into Azawad, the region of Mali in which Abderrahmane Sissako’s new film Timbuktu is located. They don’t speak the local languages (particularly Tamasheq, a Tuareg dialect) and so use translators and a mixture of Arabic, Bambara, French and English in order to ensure that women wear gloves and socks, that men roll up their trouser legs, and to ban, inter alia, football, music, smoking, loitering in the streets and sitting on one’s doorstep. Woe betide anyone who breaks these arbitrarily-imposed laws; it’s lashes, stoning or a gunshot for them.

Except that these jihadists are hypocrites. They are… click here to read whole article and make comments



Avengers: Age of Ultron

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Avengers: Age of Ultron***** 

Written and directed by Joss Whedon
Starring Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johasson

As the avengers battle the last troops still loyal to Hydra, they discover a new artificial intelligence. Out of fear for the destiny of the world, Tony Stark decides to use it as part of his global defense program. But when things do not go as planned, the avengers find themselves face to face with a new terrible threat, which would have never occurred had they not yielded to their own fears. New and unpredictable allies join them, but the real danger comes from within…

While in the first Avengers movie, Nick Fury assembled his team of superheroes due to an alien threat, this time the avengers’ own fears are responsible for their new challenge. The mysterious Wanda Maximoff (a new entry alongside her twin… click here to read whole article and make comments



Penguins of Madagascar

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Penguins of Madagascar
Directed by Eric Darnell and Simon J. Smith
Written by John Aboud, Michael Colton and Brandon Sawyer

Tired of being part of the circus (see Madagascar 3), the famous penguins Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private decide to break into Fort Knox. Here they will be kidnapped by evil Octavius Brine, a genetically modified octopus whose mind is set in turning every penguin in the world into monsters.

The ever-close team of penguins is looking for new adventures. Initially our four heroes did not want anything more than a rare snake from a vending machine in Fort Knox. Yet if they now want to survive, they have to defeat Dr Octavius Brine, also known as Dave.

He is an octopus that used to live in the New York Zoo, whose feelings got hurt when the Zoo welcomed cute and pretty animals and forgot about him. Since that dramatic incident, Dave… click here to read whole article and make comments




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Directed by Kenneth Branagh
Starring Lily James, Richard Madden, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter 

Sweet and kind Ella lives a happy childhood until her mother, the very person who taught her the value of kindness, dies. A little after her death, Ella’s merchant father marries a widow with two daughters, Anastasia and Drisella, who reveal themselves to be the polar opposite of Ella’s good character. When he also passes away, her stepmother and sisters take control of the house and turn Ella into a servant. Her name is cruelly morphed into Cinderella. One day in the woods Ella/Cinderella meets prince Kit, who is being pressured to choose a bride. Thanks to her fairy godmother’s magic, Ella goes to the ball and wins the prince’s heart. Love conquers all.

Kenneth Branagh’s live action remake of one of the most beloved tales is rich in costumes and magnificently directed. Branagh… click here to read whole article and make comments



We’re obsessed with zombies – which says a lot about our fears

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The zombie invasion is here. Our bookshops, cinemas and TVs are dripping with the pustulating debris of their relentless shuffle to cultural domination.

A search for “zombie fiction” on Amazon currently provides you with more than 25,000 options. Barely a week goes by without another onslaught from the living dead on our screens. We’ve just seen the return of one of the most successful of these, The Walking Dead, starring Andrew Lincoln as small-town sheriff, Rick Grimes. The show follows the adventures of Rick and fellow survivors as they kill lots of zombies and increasingly, other survivors, as they desperately seek safety.

Generational monsters    

Since at least the late 19th century each generation has created fictional enemies that reflect a broader unease with cultural or scientific developments. The “Yellow Peril” villains such as Fu Manchu were a response to the massive increase in Chinese migration to… click here to read whole article and make comments



Still Alice

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Still Alice
Directed by Richard Glatzer, Wash Westmoreland
Starring: Julianne Moore, Alec Baldwin, Kristen Stewart

Featuring a heart-breaking central performance from Julianne Moore as Alice Howland, a Columbia University Linguistics professor diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s, Still Alice shows us the painful reality of a disease we’d really rather not think about, a disease that frightens us, that we don’t understand and are terrified of experiencing first hand.

Based on Lisa Genova’s 2007 bestselling novel of the same name, the film tracks Alice’s diagnosis after the first effects of the disease cause her to forget the words to a speech she gives at her University. The film is an intimate portrayal of the devastating impact the disease has on Alice’s husband (Baldwin) and their children – also at risk due to the hereditary nature of the condition - as they struggle to come to terms with the fact that, in spite… click here to read whole article and make comments



Exodus: Gods and Kings

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Exodus: Gods and Kings **(*)
Directed by Ridley Scott
Starring Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, Ben Kingsley, Aaron Paul, John Turturro

Moses is raised in the Egyptian Court where he grows up to become a general. He discovers that he is a Jew who belongs to a people that have been enslaved for 400 years and live awaiting liberation.  He survives his exile in the desert and starts a family of his own. God calls to Moses asking him to liberate the Jewish people, using his skills as a general to fulfill his mission. When faced with Pharaoh Ramses’ stubbornness, God sends the plagues to force the Egyptians to surrender. Yet when the Egyptians decide to follow the Jews to the Red Sea, the most sensational prodigy occurs

It is no surprise that after Noah (Noah, by Darren Aronofsky), the tale of Moses— the heroic biblical protagonist of an action-filled story packed with… click here to read whole article and make comments



American Sniper

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American Sniper
Directed by Clint Eastwood
Starring Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller

Chris Kyle is brought up by his father as a good Christian and a good patriot. After seeing the terrorist attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Kenya and Tanzania, he enlists in the Navy Seals. Thanks to his extraordinary aim, he becomes a sniper, responsible for protecting the ground troops in Iraq. Through various missions, totaling 1,000 days abroad, he becomes the deadliest sniper in the American army— a legend for his people, and a privileged target for his enemies. Such great acts of violence— both performed and suffered— have put Chris' marriage to Taya on the line, forcing him to find an alternative way to serve his country and his fellow soldiers

Chris Kyle's story embodies the contradictions and the greatness of the American nation. Kyle, who has gone down in history as the most lethal sniper of the American… click here to read whole article and make comments


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Popcorn is MercatorNet's funky blog about what's hot and what's not in the world of cinema. Feel like contributing? Contact us at Feel like commenting? Sound off beneath the posts. 

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