A veteran cop and an ambitious detective collaborate to catch a serial killer. Well-made and acted if slightly over-familiar neo-noir with procedural aspects. Its deliberate pace and quiet style may not be for everyone, but Denzel Washington is as good as ever and LA is made to feel unfamiliar: no easy feat.
An embattled detective tries to work out how an unorthodox bank robbery became a hostage situation. Smart heist/siege movie that works as an intelligent genre piece and a sly political commentary on post-9/11 America. Lots to enjoy, with clever performances all around and plenty to think about. Recommended.
A submarine captain and his new second-in-command clash during a military crisis. Excellent testosterone-fuelled drama, making full claustrophobic use of naval service underwater tropes. Superior technical credits and a rousing score supplement the crew of capable character actors.
A ruthless crew hijacks a New York subway train. Glossy but stirring second remake of the 1970s Walter Matthau/Robert Shaw classic. Inevitably the movie is opened up to the story’s detriment, but this is nevertheless an exciting and well-played flick.
McCall vows to take revenge on the rogue CIA element that killed his friend. Clunky sequel that struggles to find meaningful things for its protagonist to do. One of those series entries that has to invent new backstory to make its plot-points stick. Kinda disappointing.
A socially-awkward lawyer faces troubles when he has to engage with the wider legal world. Though it doesn’t quite work as drama, there’s a lot to appreciate here, not least fine playing from its leads, and a bag of perhaps-unfashionable ideas about social justice.
A veteran train driver and a rookie conductor try to stop a runaway freight train. A splendid rendition of a hoary B-movie premise; Unstoppable does everything right in its handling of the subject matter. Tony Scott’s last movie is a kinetic blast throughout.
Two undercover agents get in over their heads with cross-border drug traffickers and worse. Sprightly mismatched-buddies comedy thriller with engaging leads, bags of action, and a decent supporting cast all working well. Thoroughly entertaining.
A band of hired guns seek redemption by protecting a town from a robber baron. An enjoyable nth version of Seven Samurai, this throwback western references Tombstone and Pale Rider as much as its nominal source material; all involved seem to have fun.