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Film Focus Podcast – Episode 35: War for the Planet of the Apes Review

23 July 2017 1:44 PM, PDT

On episode 35 of Film Focus I talk about the latest film in the Planet of the Apes reboot series; War for the Planet of the Apes. Now of all the films I was looking forward to this year including Logan, Guardians 2, Spider-Man and the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok and Star Wars Episode VIII, War for the Planet of the Apes was easily in the top 3.

Back in 2011 Rise of the Planet of the Apes really blew me away with its interesting story, characters, and action, and then Dawn of the Planet of the Apes came out 2014 and completely floored me with the character-driven story, drama, and visual effects. And since the first trailer dropped last year I’ve been beyond hyped to see if this film would deliver the epic third chapter that this trilogy needed. So how does War for the Planet of the Apes fare? Well check out this spoiler-free review to find out. »

- curtisheadley

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The Handmaid’s Tale: A Lesson In What We Fear

22 July 2017 12:25 PM, PDT

Any fans of the 1985 Margaret Atwood novel would have been waiting anxiously for the Channel 4 TV adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale. Even those who haven’t read the book will no doubt have been intrigued by the bizarre dystopian concept Atwood has imagined.

But perhaps the most surprising aspect of this ten-part series has been that the 32-year gap between the novel’s publication and its arrival on the small screen is barely detectable. What Atwood suggested would be at the forefront of our concerns all those years ago is frighteningly applicable today.

The preliminary feelings provoked whilst watching are stronger than your usual drama – fear, tension and even rage. Indeed, The Handmaid’s Tale offers a dystopian future unlike any other; women’s fertility has become an exchangeable currency, both male and female sexuality has been repressed and is dictated by biblical scripture, with modern day technology all but disappeared. »

- Olivia Haines

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Darts World Matchplay preview 2017

22 July 2017 3:24 AM, PDT

Nine days of drama begins this weekend as 32 of the worlds best compete for the prestigious title including the sports most famous player making his final appearance.

Phil Taylor is by far the most successful player in Matchplay history and this is one of his favourite events on the calender. In his final year on the tour will he be able to lift the title for one last time?

Standing in his way is the worlds best with Michael Van Gerwen the heavy favourite. The Dutchman has won the last two Matchplay titles including a comfortable victory in last years final 18-10 over Taylor.

Only the Power has won the event three times in a row and Mvg will join him with victory this week. He comes in great form, having won in Las Vegas last week to carry on his fantastic record this year. He starts against Stephen Bunting, »

- Simon Hahn

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U2 and The Joshua Tree at 30: The Gig that Keeps on Giving

20 July 2017 2:31 AM, PDT

This is the tour that would mark an historic occasion. Not only is it the 30th anniversary of U2’s phenomenally successful The Joshua Tree album, but the third time I was to see the band live. Yep, the hat-trick was in sight in London on Sunday, July 9, and as Twickenham Stadium, the home of English rugby, loomed large, it still wasn’t quite sinking in.

To be honest, I’d only decided late on in April to try and purchase tickets for this landmark tour. On the subject of punctuality, my apologies for only just getting around to writing this review – the traditional U2 withdrawal symptoms have only just left me. The Irish rockers’ previous two albums, 2014’s Songs of Innocence and 2009’s No Line on the Horizon, had left me somewhat underwhelmed. That’s not to say that they weren’t both decent efforts, but when you talk »

- Dan Green

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Interview: Elizabeth Healey

18 July 2017 11:21 PM, PDT

Elizabeth Healey has an outstanding career in both TV and film and more recently a role in the blockbuster Doctor Strange (2016). It was a pleasure to speak to her about her career so far, including the romantic drama Across The River, which she also co-wrote.

What first attracted you to the role of Emma in Across the River? 

Well the unique thing about Across The River is that it was completely improvised – I had done some improvisation before but nothing on this scale so that was definitely a draw. It is very rare you get this kind of opportunity and it was one I couldn’t let slip by. And I found I really loved working this way – it was a totally collaborative process from beginning to end and was a fabulously creative project to be involved in.

As a character I think Emma reminds me of many women today – she works very hard, »

- Philip Rogers

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Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 1 Review

18 July 2017 1:08 PM, PDT

And who were you, the proud Lord said…

Well, it might be a lovely summery week outside, but winter is definitely here. Over 12 months since it last graced our screens, it finally returns. Dragons, Ice Demons, death by poison and gratuitous Ed Sheeran cameos galore. Game of Thrones is back.

So, to re-cap, Cersie (Lena Heady) and Jon (Kit Harrington) finished up last Season with an added crown above their hairline. Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) finally stopped sodding about in Essos and hopped on a Greyjoy fleet on its way back to the Seven Kingdoms. The Hound (Rory McCann) turned out to have miraculously survived his duel with Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) after all and Arya (Maisie Williams)? Well, she finally became the bad-ass dangerous assassin we’d been promised from the start, taking beautiful revenge on old Walder Frey (the First Doctor himself, David Bradley).

In short, Season 6 was a fine »

- Ben McCarthy

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Review: Get Even (2017)

17 July 2017 12:14 PM, PDT

Get Even seems confused. A game undergoing some form of identity crisis – a tale of two genres, if you will, wrapped up into an oddball package. It’s not as though Get Even does anything terrible, it just doesn’t do anything terribly well. For a game straddling several different in game mechanics and systems, this is problematic.

The best way to describe Get Even is part walking simulator, part first-person shooter (Fps). Its story puts you as Cole Black, a special ops soldier, tasked in the opening moments with rescuing a girl from a derelict hospital. As such events play out, things go awry and the next thing you know, you awake with a strange, Vr device strapped to your head. You are instructed by an omnipresent voice belonging to an enigmatic, disembodied character named Red, as to what you should do. All the while, he keeps the true »

- Dean West

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Film Focus Podcast – Episode 34: Spider-Man: Homecoming Review

17 July 2017 8:48 AM, PDT

On episode 34 of Film Focus I talk about the latest film from Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures in the form of Spider-Man: Homecoming. After Spider-Man he was introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Captain America: Civil War last year I knew I was ready for his solo film straight away.

So with a decent marketing campaign and a lot of hopeful interviews from the cast and crew about how this latest version of Spider-Man would turn out, is it a successful reboot or another disappointing session? Well, check out this spoiler-free review to find out.

P.S. I probably sound less charismatic than usual and that was due to me being really exhausted at the time of recording and I apologize for that if I come across as unenthusiastic.

Theme music is “Pulse Rock” by Kevin MacLeod which can be found at https://incompetech.com/

Listen via the soundcloud »

- curtisheadley

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