HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Halloween Kills
Cicada
Sun Shines Bright, The
Last Thing Mary Saw, The
Comets
Herself
Mon Oncle d'Amerique
Wild Strawberries
Runner, The
Don't Look Up
Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Eternals
Forever Purge, The
Memoria
Venom: Let There Be Carnage
Legend of La Llorona, The
Japon
Glasshouse
Perdita Durango
Commando, The
Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror
Boiling Point
Malignant
Deadly Games
Ailey
Voyeurs, The
Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes
In the Earth
Hiroshima Mon Amour
Hotel Poseidon
Zola
No Time to Die
Klaus
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey
Candyman
Power of the Dog, The
StageFright
Voyage of Time: An IMAX Documentary
Suicide Squad, The
One Night in Miami...
   
 
Newest Articles
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
Vestron Double Bill: Dementia 13 and The Wraith
Farewell Dean Stockwell: His Years of Weirdness
Kung Fu Craft: Cinematic Vengeance! on Blu-ray
999 Letsbe Avenue: Gideon's Way on Blu-ray
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
   
 
  Gamer Player Haters
Year: 2009
Director: Mark Neveldine, Brian Taylor
Stars: Gerard Butler, Amber Valletta, Michael C. Hall, Kyra Sedgwick, Logan Lerman, Alison Lohman, Terry Crews, Ramsey Moore, Ludacris, Aaron Yoo, Jonathan Chase, Dan Callahan, Brighid Fleming, Johnny Whitworth, John De Lancie, John Leguizamo, Keith David
Genre: Action, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: It is the future and computer gaming has evolved to the next level, whereby now you can control an actual person thanks to nanotechnology implanted into their brains. The man behind this advance is Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall), a genius whose methods have opened up new vistas of leisure time to the world, but have also created a class of people who are more or less forced to participate as the characters being operated in the games. The first game is Society, where these unfortunates give up their freedom to act out the players' fantasies - but the second game is even more serious.

We were back in futuristic dystopian game scenarios yet again, and after The Tenth Victim and Rollerball and The Running Man and Series 7: The Contenders and countless more with The Hunger Games to follow, they were updated to the computer game age to tell the gamers off for unthinkingly playing out these violent concepts. Except in the hands of directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor you could tell they were revelling in it all and how it allowed them to tell a story warning audiences of the perils of soulless sensation while pretty much being soulless sensation itself. You could accuse them of hypocrisy, though their Crank movies had featured the same levels of mayhem without the moralising.

And the Crank movies were more enjoyable for not having that serious dimension to drag everything down, even if they went all out to exhaust the viewer with a barrage of imagery and noise. The trouble here was that they wished to teach us a lesson, and they were grindingly heavy-handed about it, so it was little wonder nobody flocked to see this when there was a Crank sequel to be getting on with. Some did like a lecture with their sex and violence, but it was so blatant that you were meant to be getting off on the movie's excesses that the tonal confusion hampered the plot fatally, leaving not shock but a shrug, unimpressed at what may have been busily conceived, but wasn't especially entertaining.

Gerard Butler was our hero, a man who plays in the second game Slayers, which takes the form of pressing convicts into service as pawns in a war game. If they die, well, that's no great loss, they were serving sentences for grave crimes, and the bonus is that they've contributed some excitement to those who control them and those who like to watch. The idea that people actually enjoy seeing convicts punished to the extent it passes for entertainment is an intriguing one, but like a lot of what went on here never went much beyond the facile, another element of the supposedly daring nature of the film. And given that Tillman, the character Butler played, is really innocent was either a get out clause for the directors or a massive cliché.

Or both. Tillman is the best Slayer around, except it's not too clear if that's down to his personal skill in combat or because the chap directing him, Simon (Logan Lerman), is so good at the game. Later on, of course Tillman is revealed to be great at what he does, which begs the question why bother have the prisoners controlled in the first place if they're going to do just the same without their players? Tillman's wife Angie (Amber Valletta) is part of the Society arrangement now that she has lost everything - including her daughter who has been given up for adoption - and he must save them both, leaving this far more conventional than you might have hoped for all these bells and whistles going on around the characters. Every so often there will be a moment which indicates what could have been done to capitalise on the decadent future premise, but the best bit is where Hall performs a dance number to Sammy Davis Jr's singing, apropros of not much. Music by Robb Williamson and Geoff Zanelli.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2145 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: