Fresh off the heels of Contagion, Steven Soderbergh delivers Haywire, a lean government spy story. What drives the film are its action sequences, driven by mixed martial arts star Gina Carano’s abilityto kick and jum and crush throats with her thighs. The film also reunites Soderbergh with writer Lem Dobbs, responsible for penning one of the director’s best films, The Limey. Like The Limey, Haywire is a bare-bones genre flick that depends on its ability to play with convention in a way that’s more reminiscent of Shoot the Piano Player than Pulp Fiction. (more…)
by Brian Barth
Shame, dir. Steve McQueen (2011)
All of the stars were aligning for Shame to be my newest favorite film about destructive addiction.
I entered the theater with an enduring respect and trust for McQueen, and I had been nursing a relatively significant man-crush on Michael Fassbender for the past year. At the risk of sounding dismissive, Shame was overall disappointing, with jigsaw gems shining discreetly within an overly-fragmented narrative.