RSS feed for Alistair Ryder

Favorite films

Recent activity

All

Recent reviews

More
  • Mute

    Mute

    ★★

    The central problem with Duncan Jones' Mute is that the more interesting story told within is relegated entirely to being a background Easter Egg, which is treated as nothing more than a recurring joke. It's hard to care about an overly familiar, and utterly boring, sci-fi noir narrative when we keep seeing glimpses of Sam Rockwell's character(s) from Moon plastered all over the TV news screens in the background. Yes, these glimpses, which suggest an earthbound sequel to Moon, may…

  • Dark River

    Dark River

    ★★★

    Director Clio Barnard has been regularly cited as a contemporary Ken Loach, even if her films take a more aesthetically experimental look at working class life in post-Thatcher England. Her 2010 debut, The Arbor, effectively blended documentary and dramatic reconstruction by using actors to lip synch audio interviews recorded with the film’s subject, playwright Andrea Dunbar. The Bradford council estate setting may have felt familiar to anybody who has seen a British social realist film, but the film’s execution felt…

Popular reviews

More
  • It Follows

    It Follows

    ★★★★

    With the blockbuster success of Fifty Shades of Grey in cinemas worldwide, many pundits are claiming that this marks a new era for “sex positive” movies- and much more importantly, the basic idea of a woman being as sexually open as her male counterparts not being a source of cinematic shame, but one of pride. It’s only been two decades since what I dub the “unofficial Michael Douglas misogyny trilogy” of Fatal Attraction, Basic Instinct and Disclosure hit cinemas, films…

  • Arrival

    Arrival

    ★★★★★

    I’ve seen plenty of alien invasion movies in my time, with the vast majority depicting a visit from intergalactic travellers as the trigger for mass hysteria across the globe. Arrival is the most realistic alien invasion movie I have ever seen, because the announcement of spaceships landing on planet earth is greeted with a quiet paranoia. Director Denis Villeneuve portrays this in a delicate way- he isn’t prone to overstatement, instead slowly depicting a globalised fear of the unknown in…