ABC Film Challenge – Romance E – Everything, Everything (2017)

Director: Stella Meghie

Writer: J Mills Goodloe (Screenplay) Nicola Yoon (Book)

Starring: Amandla Stenberg, Nick Robinson, Anika Noni Rose, Ana de la Reguera, Taylor Hickson, Danube Hermosillo, Dan Payne, Fiona Loewi


Plot: A teenager who’s spent her whole life confined to her home falls for the boy next door.

Tagline – Risk everything… for love.

Runtime: 1 Hour 36 Minutes


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Charming & Delightful


Story: Everything, Everything starts as we meet Maddy (Stenberg) an 18-year-old girl that has never left her house because of her rare immune disorder, her mother Pauline (Rose) is a doctor and has everything prepared to keep her alive. She has been educated and studied at home with the care of her nurse Carla (Reguera).

Maddy’s life has always been dreaming of going outside and when Olly (Robinson) family moves in next door, they become attracted to one another. When the two risk her Maddy’s life her mother tries to forbid them being together, but how can love be held back?


Thoughts on Everything, Everything


Characters – Maddy is an 18-year-old girl, she has never left her home because of rare disorder, her imagination has helped her experience parts of the world and her education has been home schooled. She meets Olly and falls in love through a window and takes the chance to experience love for the first time. Olly is the new neighbour, he wants to become friends with Maddy and it soon turns to love, he has his own personal problems at home and the moments with her give him the freedom he wants. Pauline is the mother of Maddy, she is a doctor and has spent her life trying to make sure she stays safe in the home. Carla is Maddy’s nurse and the only friend she has in the world.

PerformancesAmandla Stenberg is fantastic in the leading role, she gives us the full range of emotions she goes through, from the pure enjoyment of her life to the pain she suffers. Nick Robinson, well this young man keeps popping up everywhere now for me, he was brilliant in Love Simon and here he was great to watch too. Anika Noni Rose does make for a good controlling mother.

StoryThe story here follows a teenage girl that live her life behind closed doors because of a rare disorder which could see her become sick at any moment, when she falls for the neighbour she decides she is willing to risk her life to be with him. This is a teenage romance story so we know we are going to get stumbling blocks in their love for the most part. This is told in such a way that we see how Maddy is telling her story about how she looks at life in a positive way for each moment almost accepting her place in the world. it does try to tell everyone to enjoy their life whatever gets in their way.

RomanceThe romance between Maddy and Olly is believable from start to finish, we get the awkward moments and the passionate moment.

SettingsThe film shows us how Maddy has made the most of her home, how her imagination works and where she wants to go into the world one day.

Scene of the Movie –
The trip.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Is it that easy to get to Hawaii?

Final ThoughtsThis is a delightfully entertaining movie that shows us just how love can turn your life upside down when that person walks into your life.


Overall: Special vision on life.




ABC Film Challenge – Sci-Fi – E – Europa Report (2013)

Director: Sebastian Cordero

Writer: Philip Gelatt (Screenplay)

Starring: Daniel Wu, Sharlto Copley, Christian Camargo, Karolina Wydra, Michael Nyqvist, Anamaria Marinca, Embeth Davidtz


Plot: An international crew of astronauts undertakes a privately funded mission to search for life on Jupiter’s fourth largest moon.

Tagline – Fear. Sacrifice. Contact.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes


There may be spoilers in the rest of the review


Verdict: Smart Idea of Found Footage


Story: Europa Report starts as we meet the international crew William Xu (Wu), James Corrigan (Copley), Daniel (Camargo), Katya (Wydra), Andrei (Nyqvist) and Rosa (Marinca) who have been selected for mission to Europa, the fourth largest moon of Jupiter, one that has been studied to be considered in real life as a location to visit, because of its liquid surface.

Dr Under (Davidtz) is reporting on what was discovered on the recording upon the spacecraft, which saw it go off the radar unexpectedly.


Thoughts on Europa Report


Characters – We need to look at the whole crew as one unit here, William, James, Daniel, Katya, Andrei and Rosa, they have come from different countries, to be part of this big mission, we do have level headed members of the team, which does take away any sort of individual characteristics to make them feel real. The crew all know how big this moment will be and will discuss the problems they come to face on it.

PerformancesThe cast does have some well-known names including Michael Nyqvist and Sharlto Copley who along with the rest of the cast do make use believe the mission we are following, nobody is over acting or being a hero, they are grounded scientist.

StoryThe story here is one of the most interesting ideas for a found footage film that I have seen, the idea follows a space mission to Europa one of the moons of Jupiter, but something goes wrong and we are watching the recordings. Now. Firstly, I want to point out that the idea of travelling to Europa has been one the scientific community has been talking about for years, every piece of information about the moon in correct (for the time of the film being made), this is what makes this such a fascinating story. the problem with this story comes from the fact that we know it is a found footage story, so you can guess how this all pans out. I did like how we were presented this story like a documentary of the events being revisited though.

Mystery/Sci-FiThe mystery in this film comes from the ideas of what could be found on Europa, what the crew might have found and what happened to the crew. The sci-fi side plays hand in hand with this as we go into space to search for a potential new home.

SettingsThe film is set mostly inside the spacecraft which sees the science being discussed, it shows the beauty of space and how the crew must have full trust in each other.

Special EffectsThe effects are part of the weaker point of the film, they don’t look as flawless as other space based movies.

Scene of the Movie –
The final footage.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The clichés the film falls into in the end.

Final ThoughtsThis is an enjoyable sci-fi mystery, it uses the real idea of a space mission to add the horrors of what could happen if things went wrong and answers are required.


Overall: Smart, interesting sci-fi found footage film.




Edge of Extinction (2020) Movie Review

Director: Andrew Gilbert

Writer: Andrew Gilbert (Screenplay)

Starring: Luke Hobson, Georgie Smibert, Chris Kaye, Bryn Hodgen, Nicholas Chambers, Susan Lee Burton

Plot: 15 years after World War III, the nuclear winter is over, but mankind is on the verge of extinction. Civilisation no longer exists, food is scarce and most eke out a living by stealing and killing. One boy clings onto life in the desolate countryside of southern Britain, where staying away from other humans has been key to his survival. But this self imposed isolation comes to an abrupt end when he crosses paths with another group of survivors and an enemy far more savage than any of them could imagine.

Runtime: 2 Hour 16 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Bleak End of the World

Story: Edge of Extinction starts in the aftermath of a nuclear war, the Boy (Hobson) lives in isolation away from everyone, keeping his supplies together until he meets a Girl (Smibert) who ends up being a trap for a group of Road Rats, with The Man (Kaye) taking his stuff.

When the Boy goes looking for revenge, he discovers the group under threat from a bigger group of cannibals, who take the Girl, forcing the Boy to team up with the Man to rescue the Girl from the new danger she finds herself in.

Thoughts on Edge of Extinction

Characters – The Boy is the lone person that is surviving the world, he is still dealing with the loss of his brother during the devastation in the world, this changes when he reluctantly lets a girl in, only for himself being left injured with nothing, before deciding to show his deadlier side when it comes to fighting against cannibals. The man is the one that leaves the boy with nothing, only to be the only survivor of an attack on his own group, he will play more into the torturous side of getting information and working with the boy, they show their own strengths along the way. The girl is used by the man as bait to trap lonely people to steal their goods, she doesn’t want to be involved in this, but this is the only way to survive in this world, until she learns the worst in humanity. The Chief runs the cannibals with an iron fist, if they don’t do what he says, he will kill them, he collects women like trophies, but isn’t afraid to lead his men into battle.

PerformancesLuke Hobson and Chris Kaye are both good with their characters, but they do both struggle to give themselves enough individuality with the mindsets meant to be different. Georgie Smibert is mostly the victim, but does show the goodness left in the dark world. Bryn Hodgen works well as the lead villain, with his menacing behaviour showing the psychotic side.

StoryThe story here follows a group of survivors in a post-nuclear war that are trying to survive in the world filled with new dangers, humans, supplies are thin and now the small group must take a stand against a new threat, one that is using women as sex slaves and killing anyone else for food. This might well be a story that we have seen before, with the humans being the only enemy this time. It could have a feel like ‘The Road’ with the British countryside, with some bleak ideas the story follows. One side note is that the Boy does have an issue where he talks to himself, only it gets dropped in the second half of the movie.

Sci-FiThe sci-fi side of this story, does look at the world that has suffered the destruction, with a very bleak looking future.

SettingsThe film does use the empty environments to show us how empty the world has become after the war.

Scene of the Movie – The battle.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – This is too long, it doesn’t need to be nearly two and half hours long.

Final Thoughts This is a nice looking end of the world movie, it looks bleak, it feel bleak and shows a reality that could be horrible to live through. It is well acted, with the only problem being the length of the film.

Overall: Dark, Bleak and Empty Thriller

Edge of Extinction will be released on Digital Download from May 18 here and on DVD later in the year here, both can be pre-ordered now

ABC Film Challenge – World Cinema – E – Escobar: Paradise Lost (2014) Movie Review

Director: Andrea Di Stefano

Writer: Andrea Di Stefano (Screenplay)

Starring: Benicio Del Toro, Josh Hutcherson, Brady Corbet, Claudia Traisac, Tenoch Huerta, Ana Giradot

Plot: In Colombia, a young surfer meets the woman of his dreams – and then meets her uncle, Pablo Escobar.

Tagline – Nobody escapes Pablo Escobar.

Runtime: 2 Hours

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Strong Second Half

Story: Escobar: Paradise Lost starts as Canadian surfer Nick (Hutcherson) has moved to Columbia to start a business with his friend Dylan (Corbet) giving surfing lessons, he meets a beautiful local woman Maria (Traisac) falling in love along the way, only to learn that her Uncle is Pablo Escobar (Del Toro).

Nick does get welcomed into the family with what starts as a friendly welcome from a political figure, but soon Pablo shows the darker side, which both Nick and Maria want to escape from, but know if they run, they will end up like most of the victims against Pablo, dead.

Thoughts on Escobar: Paradise Lost

Characters – Pablo Escobar is the know criminal drug lord, here we meet him as a family man first, who will always welcome honest people into his family before showing his darker side, which will show how deadly it is to cross the man, with his ability to strike fear into the people of Columbia. Nick is a surfer that just wants to live in paradise, where he meets a beautiful woman, only he gets drawn into the life of crime by her uncle, where he is torn between going through with crimes or risking his own life. Maria is the woman that Nick falls in love with, they both want to enjoy the paradise they are living in, even if her Uncle has deadlier plans.

PerformancesBenicio Del Toro is strong in the leading role and shows the emotionless state of mind of the crime lord, while Josh Hutcherson does show us just how desperate his character become through the situation he finds himself in. the rest of the cast are fine without needing to do as much as the leads in the film.

StoryThe story here follows a surfer that finds himself working for crime lord Pablo Escobar against his will after starting to date his niece. The story does show us how innocent the romance starts out being, your typical boy meets girl, before it shows how much control Pablo Escobar had on everyone around him, striking fear into anyone that was against him by killing anyone he didn’t like. We see how Nick is trying to find a way out of this hell, to be with the love of his life and the consequences of being in this world. The first half of this story is slow moving, but once Nick is given his assignment, things get a lot more intense.

Crime/RomanceThe romance side of this film is your typical boy meets girl, it is all sweet until he meets the family, which does show us the crime world that we are thrown into under the crime lord who isn’t afraid to kill people, including family.

SettingsThe film does use the backdrop of Columbia well, it shows that the paradise would be a beautiful place to wake up to and how the deals could happen without people knowing.

Scene of the Movie – Nick’s mission.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – The slow first half.

Final Thoughts This is a crime thriller that starts slowly but once we hit the half way mark it becomes edge or your seat battle between Nick and Escobar’s men.

Overall: Could have been saved with a stronger start.

Enemy Lines (2020) Movie Review

Director: Anders Banke

Writer: Michael Wright (Screenplay) Tom George (Story)

Starring: Ed Westwick, John Hannah, Corey Johnson, Tom Wisdom, Pawel Delag, Ekaterina Vladimirova

Plot: In the frozen, war torn landscape of occupied Poland during World War II, a crack team of allied commandos are sent on a deadly mission behind enemy lines to extract a rocket scientist from the hands of the Nazis.

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: War 101

Story: Enemy Lines starts when American General McCloud (Johnson) turns to British Colonel Preston (Hannah) to use his men to help Major Kaminski (Westwick) looks to extract a rocket scientist Dr Fabien (Delag) from Poland under the guard of the Germans, to bring back to the American’s.

Once the team has Fabien, the next challenge is getting home, with Kaminski needing to use his connections in Poland to elude the Germans that are now hunting down the people that have their scientist.

Thoughts on Enemy Lines

Characters – Kaminski is the American Major that is leading the mission, his connection to Poland is key to the mission with him being fluent in Polish and knows how important this mission will be, he shows the leadership, while making the tough decisions along the way. Colonel Preston is the British Colonel that must select a unit to support Kaminski, he picks his best and gives them everything they can to achieve the mission working with the General. General McCloud arranges the mission, he watches over the potential outcome with Preston, with them always planning their ideas to survive the situation. We do get to meet the unit, the resistance soldiers that are helping in the extraction, as well as the rocket scientist that is being extracted, who has become conflicted with the potential weapon he could create.

PerformancesEd Westwick in the leading role is the strongest part of the mission, with John Hannah and Corey Johnson doing everything right from the war room scenes. Elsewhere we don’t have the strongest acting, but most of the characters are meant to just be part of a military unit.

StoryThe story here follows a mission which sees British and American soldiers going behind enemy lines in Poland to extract a scientist who could help swing the victory of war and we follow the mission unfolding. This story does show the mission happening, it is a behind enemy lines mission, only it doesn’t feel as intense as it could do, we get to see how both sides are looking to capture the scientist. The story plays out like most stories in this genre, where we see how what could be a routine mission, does require something else to happen to make it a success, which should give the leader of the mission a dilemma about what to do if a problem arises.

WarThe film is set in World War II, with the mission being targeted in Poland, the war sequences being routine military positions with bullets flying.

SettingsThe settings are used for military positioning for the battles trying to get their hands on the scientist.

Scene of the Movie – The extraction.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Not enough John Hannah.

Final Thoughts This is a war movie that doesn’t become as intense as the mission implies, though it does like to look at the bigger decision of what the scientist could bring to the war.

Overall: Routine War Film.

Signature Entertainment presents Enemy Lines on DVD & Digital HD from May 4th