THE CONJURING 2

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: James Wan Stars: Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Frances O'Connor, Simon McBurney, Franke Potente, Madison Wolfe, Benjamin Haigh, Lauren Esposito, Patrick McAuley, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Simon Delaney, Bab Adrian. Having established himself as one of the top directors of horror films working in Hollywood at the moment, James Wan (Saw, Insidious, etc) continues to mine the exploits of real life paranormal ghost hunters Ed and Lorraine Warren in this sequel to the 2013 box office hit The Conjuring. The Warrens made their reputation after Continue reading

A WALK IN THE WOODS

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Ken Kwapis Stars: Robert Redford, Nick Nolte, Emma Thompson, Nick Offerman, Kristen Schaal, Mary Steenbergen. We have had several films recently in which characters have hiked some challenging paths in order to find solace, comfort or redemption. There was Emile Hirsch as the doomed Christopher McCandless in Sean Penn's Into The Wild, Martin Sheen as a grieving father walking the Santiago de Compostela trail in memory of his dead son in The Way, and Reese Witherspoon hiked the Pacific Coast Trail in Wild. Now we get two older men hiking Continue reading

ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2014 – reviews

by GREG KING Last updated September 28. SCAMPIA'S GOLD. Originally made for Italian television, this has to be one of the grimmest feel good movies in the festival. This inspiring and enjoyably crowd pleasing underdog story was based on the actual triumph of an Italian teenager from Scampia, who won a gold medal in judo at the Sydney Olympics. Scampia is one of the most degraded and impoverished areas in Naples, where the crime gang the Camorra reign supreme in the overcrowded high rise ghettoes. There local kids are either forced into prostitution or drug pushing or Continue reading

THE FAMILY MAN

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Brett Ratner Stars: Nicolas Cage, Tea Leoni, Don Cheadle, Jeremy Piven, Saul Rubinek, Josef Sommer, Harve Presnell, Amber Valletta, Mackenzie Vega. The spirit of Frank Capra's enduring Christmas classic It's A Wonderful Life runs throughout this well meaning romantic comedy/drama in which a rapacious, uptight Wall Street broker suddenly discovers that maybe greed is not so good and, sometimes, the best things in life are the simple things. Thirteen years ago, hot shot financial whiz kid Jack Campbell (Nicolas Cage) left his Continue reading

A SIMPLE PLAN

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Sam Raimi Stars: Bill Paxton, Billy Bob Thornton, Bridget Fonda, Gary Cole, Brent Briscoe, Chelcie Ross, Becky Ann Baker, Jack Walsh. Set in Delano, a small town in America's midwest, during a bitter winter, A Simple Plan invites obvious comparisons to the Coen brothers' Fargo. However, this violent, darkly comic, character driven thriller has a darker and more frightening undertone. A Simple Plan shows how evil can be created out of the most banal circumstances, and how greed and money can change even ordinary people, driving them Continue reading