Escape and Evasion (2019) Movie Review

Director: Storm Ashwood

Writer: Storm Ashwood (Screenplay)

Starring: Josh McConville, Rena Owen, Hugh Sheridan, Firass Dirani, Bonnie Sveen, Steve Le Marquid

Plot: After his men are killed in Burma. A lone soldier returns home in search of solace. Hiding a dark secret and confronted by an unrelenting journalist, he’s forced to face the ghosts of his past one last time.

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Escape and Evasion starts when journalist Rebecca (Sveen) decides to go in search of answers, as to what happened to her brother Josh (Sheridan) in his time in Burma, where only one person returned, Seth (McConville), a troubled man, who is still suffering the nightmares of his time in the war.

As the two get to know each other, Seth slowly start to relive the final moments of his team in a battle they shouldn’t have been caught in the middle of, helping Rebecca get the closure she needs, as well as helping Seth himself fight his own demons.

Thoughts on Escape and Evasion

Characters – Seth was the lone survivor of his unit, this has left him broken back home in Australia, the one thing keeping him on the right path, is his daughter, his sunshine in a world of darkness. He suffers nightmares of his time, seeing the fallen soldiers in everyday life and struggling to handle his aggression. He gets a chance to finally exorcism his own demons when he meets Rebecca. Rebecca is the sister of one of the soldiers who was lost in war, Seth’s best friend, she wants to know the truth about what happened to her brother, which sees her getting close to Seth, letting him open up for the first time since his return. Josh was Seth’s best friend, the two served together for years and knew how to trust each, but he never returned after their latest outing.

PerformancesJosh McConville does give us an excellent leading performance, showing the damaged caused by being involved in war, showing the inner conflict he is suffering through, being torn up by his time, but wanting to be the man he once was. Bonnie Sveen does bring the grieving sibling to life well through the film, with the rest of the cast doing everything they need to, to make us understand what happened to them.

StoryThe story here follows a war veteran who was the lone survivor of his unit, he is torn up with what happened to him suffering nightmares, but when one of the siblings of his unit wants answers, he will need to confront the truth about what happened. When it comes to this story, we get to see the aftermath of war, when only one survivor returns, left being filled with nightmares of his time in conflict, struggling to get his life back on track. It is important to show us how difficult surviving war can be, how it will have made people do things they should never have had to do and how difficult the recovery process will in fact be.

WarThe film shows us how one person surviving war will leave them broken, while showing us what happened during his time, will focus more on the basic conflict of losing people.

SettingsThe film uses the settings to show us where Seth is in life now, struggling to hold things together in life, with dreams of a better life, along with the moments during the war.


Scene of the Movie – The light at the end of the tunnel.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We don’t see the help Seth gets to improve.

Final Thoughts This is an important drama that puts a highlight on just how difficult post-war can be on a soldier that is left to fend for himself.

Escape And Evasion will be released on Digital Download from September 28 and on DVD from October 26, both can be pre-ordered now:

 

The Tunnel (2019) Movie Review

Director: Pal Oie

Writer: Kjersti Helen Rasmussen (Screenplay)

Starring: Thorbjorn Harr, Ylva Fuglerud, Lisa Carlehed, Mikkel Bratt Silset, Peter Forde

Plot: When a truck crashes inside a tunnel, people on their way home for Christmas are brutally trapped in a deadly fire. With a blizzard raging outside, and the first responders struggling to get to the accident, it’s every man for himself.

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: The Tunnel starts on Christmas Eve with a blizzard outside and the Norwegian tunnel system under control, families are looking to get home for Christmas, when a lorry gets involved in an accident inside one of the large tunnel systems, with people trapped inside the smoke fills the tunnels as Stein (Harr) leads the rescue crew, which includes trying to save his own daughter Elise (Fuglerud).

Thoughts on The Tunnel

Characters – Stein is a fire and rescue operator, one that has become distant from his daughter, which is always a strain on their relationship over Christmas, he leads the rescue which starts out like normal, until he learns his daughter is inside the tunnel, where he will risk everything to rescue her. Elise is the distant daughter that is trapped in the tunnel, she uses her own survival skills to try and keep the passengers of the bus alive, this will give her a chance to follow in her father footsteps when it comes to becoming a heroic figure to some. We do meet the rest of the rescue team that are put in the impossible position of not knowing what to do next, other victims that are trapped that need rescuing, which are here to add even more drama to the events of the film.

PerformancesThorbjorn Harr in the leading role shows us the determination to first make up his relationship with his daughter and secondly his strength to fight to save people. Ylva Fuglerud leads the supporting with ease, as the whole cast looks great through the film.

StoryThe story here follows the events of a disaster in a tunnel in Norway, which sees people trapped in the smoke-filled tunnel with a race against time to survive. When it comes to disaster movies, we are used to seeing a big over the top moment, while this one brings us a more realistic idea of what could happen, if an accident happened, it is a slow build that occurs, with the threat being smoke over explosions. This is based on a real event, which does make us wonder just how much was real, or was it just the idea a tunnel got filled with smoke.

ThrillerWe are kept on the edge of our seats through this film, left waiting to see what will happen next.

SettingsThe film keeps the action inside the tunnel, which improves the intensity going on through the film.


Scene of the Movie – The last call.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Certain things characters don’t seem to use common sense.

Final Thoughts This is a great realistic looking disaster film that brings the importance of needing to save a loved one, no matter what it takes.

Signature Entertainment presents The Tunnel on Digital HD 21st September

Schemers (2019) Movie Review

Director: Dave Mclean

Writer: Dave Mclean, Khaled Spiewak, Kyle Titterton (Screenplay)

Starring: Conor Berry, Sean Connor, Grant Robert Keelan, Tara Lee, Kit Clark, Blair Robertson

Plot: His football career over, Davie starts promoting gigs in Dundee with two friends, leading to a hugely ambitious Iron Maiden show. Out of his depth and in debt with gangster Fergie, Davie needs to pull off the biggest scheme of his life.


Tagline – Always let ambition blind ability.

Runtime: 1 Hour 31 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Schemers starts as Davie (Berry) sees his football career end with a leg break, looking to get back on with his life, he teams up with his two friends Scot (Connor) and John (Keelan) in an attempt to start working on hosting gigs around Dundee, only he must work within the rules gangster Fergie (Mills) offers him.

As Davie sees the business starting to take off, he is getting bigger names heading his way, which sees him turning his head to the illegal world he finds himself in, while running up his own debts, all for one more target to achieve something big.

Thoughts on Schemers

Characters – Davie is a promising young footballer who sees his potential career shattered by an injury, turning to another love of his music, he starts a business with friends looking to promote music in Dundee, where he will have to deal with gangster, debt and learning about his own ambition to make things happen. Scot and John are the best friends that support Davie’s wild ideas, helping with he finances he can’t always handle. Shona is the nurse that helps Davie back to fitness, while slowly falling for each other, she doesn’t like certain decisions Davie is making which could see his own health in trouble. Fergie is the gangster that own all the venues in the city, giving him a slice in every show, turning the screws to get himself more money and if people don’t pay, he will hurt them.

PerformancesConor Berry brings us a confident performance, showing us how his characters always believed he could solve the problems, with the wise talking. Sean Connor and Grant Robert Keelan are great in the supporting roles, with Tara Lee filling the love interested very well through the film.

StoryThe story here follows Davie McClean a promising young footballer who sees his career shattered turning to arranging gigs, learning about the gangsters that are trying to control the area, needing to prove he can escape this life and become something more. This is a story that is based on the real people, and the struggles to make things happen, the risks it took to achieve things and seeing how the 70s was a different era for making music, by performing to become somebody, which would circle around the booker. The story always feels like it is only just about to happen, showing us how unplanned most of the ideas are.

ComedyThe comedy in the film comes from seeing how the plans always just come together, with Davie always finding himself in more trouble.

SettingsThe film is set in Dundee, where we see the rivalry between the football teams and the rising music scene.


Scene of the Movie – The Iron Maiden preparation.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Not enough threat from the gangster.

Final Thoughts This is an entertaining comedy that showed us the unorthodox methods Davie McClean used to make a name for himself in the late-1970s.



The Tomb: Devil’s Revenge (2019) Movie Review

Director: Jared Cohn

Writer: Maurice Hurley (Screenplay)

Starring: William Shatner, Jeri Ryan, Jason Brooks, Robert Scott Wilson, Ciara Hanna, Phillip Andre Botello

Plot: A down-on-his-luck archaeologist returns from a cave expedition that contains a cursed relic that’s also a portal to Hell. He discovers that the only way to stop the curse on his family is to go back to the cave and destroy the relic.


Tagline – Welcome to hell

Runtime: 1 Hour 38 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: The Tomb: Devil’s Revenge starts when Jack (Brooks) leads a team into a cave in search for a relic, one that has led to him putting everything on the line for, even with his wife Susan (Ryan) begging him not to pursue this search.

When Jack suffers a heart attack, he sees perfectly healthy afterwards, which leads him, Susan and their kids to look to stop a curse he has unwittingly released on the world, one that also consumed his father Hayes (Shatner).

Thoughts on The Tomb: Devil’s Revenge

Characters – Jack is the explorer that followed in his father’s footsteps, he has become obsessed with one piece of treasure a relic of the sun people, which he discovers, only to find a evil force behind it, one that continue to haunt him once he leaves, one he needs to stop before more people are killed by the spirits he has unleashed. Susan is the wife od Jack’s she wants him to give up the pursuit of this relic, but once he thinks he needs to end everything, she brings the family together to complete the task together. Hayes is Jack’s father who has always been searching for treasures, with him being the main reason why Jack has followed the same pursuit all these years. Eric and Dana are the college aged kids that join the quest into the cave, being part of the family bonding session.

PerformancesJason Brooks in the leading role does well through the film, his nightmares are clear, as he shows the struggle between knowing what is real or not. Jeri Ryan as the supportive and concerned wife works well having more star power than Brooks, but the draw would be William Shatner, who does keep his role calmer than we would expect.

StoryThe story here follows an archaeologist who has spent most of his life searching for a relic, which when he discovers, sees a series of horrific events, which will see him needing to work with his family to stop an evil coming into the world. This is a story which will dive into the idea of ancient evil still being around and show how people will become obsessed with learning the truth about history, even if it costs them more than they are willing to pay, the whole hunting and exploring idea does work very well through the film, only it does seem to be let down heavily by the conclusion of the story. The evil themselves do have some great weapons which would strike fear into people, only using the family in the search, does lose some parts of the peril of the journey.

HorrorThe horror in the film comes from the devil and his worshippers who appear in large numbers and have a big kill count through the film, they might look and act scary, but the fights themselves are not as strong as they should be.

SettingsThe settings in the film are strange because the cave looks like something people might have discovered before, it does seem strange how easy it seemed to access, not being as secretive as it could be.

Special EffectsThe effects are a mixed bag because we get to see the evil which do have a terrifying look, only the injuries rely on the CGI moments.


Scene of the Movie – The evil’s weapons.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – The ending.

Final Thoughts This is a solid enough treasure exploring film looking into American history, only it doesn’t seem to hit as hard on the scares, atmosphere or the evil kills.



Evil Under the Skin (2019) Movie Review

Director: Jeffrey Schneider

Writer: Luc Bernier (Screenplay)

Starring: Helene Udy, Carl Bailey, Pamela Sutch, Donna Hamblin, Colton Baumgartner, Tom O’Hearn

Plot: A mother and daughter head off for a secluded weekend to reconnect but little do they know the sordid past of the home they’re staying in let alone the strangeness it attracts as they descend into madness.   


Tagline – fear comes from within

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Evil Under the Skin starts when Sophie (Udy) and her daughter Roselee (Barajas) are spending time together in a lake house to reconnect, they enjoy a drink or too, when locals Carla (Hamblin) and Matt (O’Hearn) start eyeing the pair up, wondering about the noise coming from the home at night.

As the time continues there is an air of uncertainty about the truth, whether something has happened in the house that Sophie is denying.

Thoughts on Evil Under the Skin

Final Thoughts Evil Under the Skin is a very strange movie, it is trying to build up a big mystery about an even that has happened between a mother and daughter, we learn that something has happened, only we are not sure what, as we are stuck following characters actions about what happened. When it comes to the acting, you can see the weaknesses here, with each interaction never feeling remotely real with none of the cast having any chemistry, leaving the movie feeling very flat. This is a film that just doesn’t seem to feel completed that ends up leaving you feeling very disconnected from everything going on.