You might think that a thriller featuring big names like Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy – alongside brand-new hot property Elizabeth Olsen – would at the very least be a slickly filmed, if creatively hollow, venture. Sure, Robert De Niro was in New Year’s Eve and thus has obviously lost his marbles. But Cillian Murphy wouldn’t be in a film that didn’t make sense, would he? You’d think that wouldn’t you? But no. Nope. You won’t find anything plausible here; only a collection of dodgy, derivative, poorly-acted strands mashed together like a jigsaw done by a drunk toddler. And not as fun to watch.
The English-language debut of Swedish thriller director Daniel Espinosa is a “high-octane”, “intense”, “no holds barred” (delete as appropriate) maelstrom of secrets, spies and badly edited fight scenes. The cast is fine and it’s always nice to go back to South Africa (fokken prawns!), but surely we’ve outgrown two hour gunfights interspersed with trash talk?
Tired of going to a bland old West End cinema, paying £8 for a popcorn combo and crying salty tears all the way through the latest piece of superhero big budget low quality rubbish, lamenting the state of exhibition practices these days? Do you long for the days of all nighters, of midnight movies, of dirty dive bars that stick a blanket to the wall as a makeshift screen? Well, you’re not the only one, as we pay tribute to the groups that are bringing movies out of the cinema, and re-igniting our love for the big screen.
You might not be tempted by Buried – after all, it’s by a director you’ve never heard of and it stars an actor best known for playing vapid romantic interests or unnecessarily violent supervillains. We’d more or less written Ryan Reynolds off too, but in this extraordinary film he demonstrates a range and talent which left us gasping for breath. A bit like him, because he’s been buried alive.