BLACK POND

6 out of 10

Release Date: 11th November 2011

Director: Tom Kingsley & Will Sharpe (The Darkest Universe)

Cast: Chris Langham, Colin Hurley, Amanda Hadingue, Will Sharpe, Anna O’Grady, Helen Cripps, Sophia Di Martino and Simon Amstell

Writer: Tom Kingsley & Will Sharpe

Trailer: BLACK POND 

REVIEW COMING SOON

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THIS ACTOR IN BEFORE?

  • Chris Langham: The Darkest Universe, The Thick Of It (TV), Have I Got News For You (TV), Room To Rent, Carry On Columbus, Not The Nine O’Clock News (TV)
  • Colin Hurley: David Copperfield (1986)(TV)
  • Will Sharpe: Casualty (TV)
  • Sophia Di Martino: The Darkest Universe, Draw On Sweet Night, Casualty (TV)
  • Simon Amstell: Grandma’s House (TV), Never Mind The Buzzcocks (TV), Popworld (TV)

FIT

6.5 out of 10

Release Date: 5th November 2010 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Rikki Beadle-Blair (Bashment / KickOff)

Cast: Rikki Beadle-Blair, Lydia Toumazou, Sasha Frost, Duncan MacInnes, Lugvig Bonin, Stephen Hoo, Jay Brown, Jack Shalloo, Jason Maza, Jo Castleton, Alexis Gregory, Jennifer Daley, Kyle Treslove, David Avery and Gary Beadle

Writer: Rikki Beadle-Blair

Trailer: FIT

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

THE ESTATE

5.5 out of 10

Release Date: 1st August 2011

Director: Steve Drew

Cast: Faraz Ishani, Josh Herdman, Sean Brosnan, Brian Murphy, Nicholas Harrison, Judi Martin Clark, Steve Drew, Grant Huggair, Forbes KB, Jessica Martin Campbell, Adam Saint with Ian Virgo and Dave Courtney

Writer: Steve Drew

Trailer: THE ESTATE

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

KICKOFF

5 out of 10

Release Date: 26th Oct 2011 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Rikki Beadle-Blair (Bashment / Fit)

Cast: Rikki Beadle-Blair, Ian Sharp, Duncan MacInnes, Nathan Clough, Ludvig Bonin, Stephen Hoo, Craig Storrod, Michael Lindall, Jack Shalloo, Sasha Frost, Jai Rajani, Alexis Gregory, Kyle Treslove, David Avery, Rebecca Jeorin, Samantha Lyden with Jason Maza and Jay Brown

Writer: Rikki Beadle-Blair

Trailer: KICKOFF

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

LONDON RIVER

4 out of 10

Release Date: 9th July 2010

Director: Rachid Boucherab (DAYS OF GLORY)

Cast: Brenda Blethyn, Sotigui Kouyate, Francis Magee, Sami Bouajila, Marc Baylis, Bernard Blancan and Roschdy Zem 

Writer: Rachid Boucherab

Trailer: LONDON RIVER

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

  • Brenda Blethyn: Vera (TV), Dead Man Running, Atonement, Piccadilly Jim, On a Clear Day, A Way of Life, Beyond The Sea, Lovely and Amazing, Saving Grace, RKO 281, Little Voice, Night Train, Girls’ Night, Remember Me? (1997), Secrets and Lies, Outside Edge (TV), A River Runs Through It, The Witches
  • Sotigui Kouyate: Dirty Pretty Things, The Sheltering Sky
  • Francis Magee: Blood Cells, Good People, Jimmy’s Hall, Cemetery JunctionThe Crew, Layer Cake, The Sex Lives Of The Potato Men
  • Sami Bouajila: Beautiful Lies, Days of Glory, The Nest, The Siege (1998)
  • Marc Baylis: Coronation St (TV), Strippers Vs. Werewolves
  • Bernard Blancan: Leaving (2009), Days of Glory
  • Roschdy Zem: The Cold Light of Day, Point Blank (2010), Days of Glory, Clubbed To Death, My Favourite Season, J’Embrasse Pas

DON’T LET HIM IN

3 out of 10

Release Date: Unknown, 2011 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Kelly Smith

Cast: Sophie Linfield, Gordon Alexander, Sam Hazeldine, Gemma Harvey, Rhys Meredith, Esther Shephard, Jason Carter

Writer: Kelly Smith

Trailer: DON’T LET HIM IN

REVIEW BY JOE PESCI II AKA MATT USHER

Unknown-5Don’t read this until you’ve seen the film. Or if you have no intention of seeing it. Sensible people will be in the latter camp.

I know it’s a terrible film, but I enjoyed it slightly and yes I’m ashamed to say that. It’s another film which seems to accept the principle that fatal wounds are no impediment to someone with a bone to pick, and it also breaks the cardinal rule of serial killer movies (SPOILER: never have more than one killer). The plot is stupid, the characters are as colourless a bunch as ever stayed in a Beauty Spot of Doom, the acting is monotonous, and the Beauty Spot of Doom is drabber than a wet weekend in Swindon in March. And yet…

So there’s this girl who’s just met and befriended/bedded an oikish banker (who is therefore evil). Meanwhile her boring brother and his wife/girlfriend (who is a nurse – which is very important) are heading off to remotest Devon for the weekend. So they meet up and head off to a Cottage of Inevitable Death, which is in the middle of a Beauty Spot of Doom, which just happens to be the hunting ground of the local serial killer, affectionately known as The Tree Surgeon. A cheery policeman tells our crazy kids to be careful in the woods much as you might warn someone not to lie in the sun too long. Meanwhile our boorish banker lives up to his rhyming slang and heads off to the pub. Or does he? After all he has a murderous secret! Whilst he’s out (and without an alibi) an altercation occurs! And then a hitch-hiker the nasty banker refused to pick up arrives at the Cottage of Inevitable Death, badly wounded. Thankfully nurse Sophie Linfield (UNDERGROUND) uses her nurse skills to patch him up. But why don’t his glasses fit? The stage is set for a not particularly enthralling battle of wits, double crossings and stabbings.

There’s a pointless flashback structure (one which seems to be designed purely to get the heroine into her underwear as early as possible), beginning with nurse Sophie running for her life from the unseen chopper-wielding murderer before flashing back to see how they got into this mess. This adds nothing to the proceedings other than to tell us who’s going to live longest. Couldn’t they have opened with the bad guy chasing an earlier victim?

The film follows the standard template: assemble drippy characters, send them to danger-zone, show some dangers, make one or more of them behave suspiciously, introduce another figure, let the bloodbath commence. It’s very flat and lacking in atmosphere, and there’s just not much to look at. The film is devoid of originality but it is a kind of nice homage to other better films. Even our serial killer isn’t particularly interesting. The characters are some of the dumbest individuals you will ever encounter in movies – in spite of the title’s instruction they do let him in, twice. The actors are decent enough but rarely get to flesh out their characters. Gordon Alexander (SUCKER PUNCH) as oikish Tristan is an oikish oik, his girlfriend is only ever a selfish dumb blonde, the husband is basically Mark Hebden from The Archers whilst the plucky nurse / heroine is well meaning and resourceful. As for KILLER TREE MAN he gets to do dribbly manic laughter. I guess I just gave the game away there. Sorry, spoiler-phobes.

But there is the fun to be had in guessing the dark secrets. Hopefully my spoilers haven’t given too much away (apart from the number and identities of the killers) but you may be mildly diverted trying to work out who did what and when and why no-one has worked it out and why is the idiot telling the killer he knows he’s a killer when they’re in an Isolated Fishing Lake of Murder? Don’t Let Him In is a brief nothing-special-often-awful-sometimes-quite-fun kind of film. It’s forgettable nonsense.

I admit that, having been exposed to a seemingly infinite diet of films including Basement, Deranged and Underground, my critical faculties may have been irreparably damaged. Don’t Let Him In doesn’t pretend to be anything other than a tawdry shocker. I wouldn’t say it succeeds in that ambition, but it does do what it sets out to do. True, all that is is kill a bunch of obnoxious characters in a claustrophobic setting, and in doing that it does nothing more than keep some actors and crew members off the streets for a few weeks. But, at the very least, should you find an hour and a quarter of spare time which you don’t mind wasting, you will at least find a film where you’ll send that time shouting the title at the characters on screen. And how often does that happen?

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

HUSH YOUR MOUTH

7 out of 10

Release Date: 8th September 2010 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Tom Tyrwhitt

Cast: Jason Maza, Jay Simpson, Coshti Dowden, Kelly Russell, Samuel Oatley, Ruby Visaria, Jessica Jones, Cornell John, Ryan Winsley, Sukie Smith with Ruth Sheen and Khalid Abdalla

Writer: Tom Wyrwhitt

Trailer: HUSH YOUR MOUTH

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?